South Africa's basketball community

Basketball wave number… Year 2013

By on August 24, 2013 in News

It’s an election year in basketball this year and as such little is coming out of the BSA office lately with members jostling for positions.

Its also about a month away until we see the birth of the new semi-professional league, scheduled to start at the beginning of September but now postponed to end of September to sort out a few issues. Is this going to be a sustainable league or are we going to have a situation where people come in and grab as much as they can in terms of profits and they get out. For the sake of our sport, I hope that it is not the case but everything seem to be pointing in that direction.

We have interested sponsors, players and a community that has been waiting for years for something to be done, for someone to grab the sport by the horns and make it work. But we don’t have enough professional league caliber players/coaches/administrators to make this a product that will be sustainable and attractive. To fix the gap created by years of inactivity, there is talk about increasing the number if foreign players allowed to play in the various teams because of the lack of players; this will not help in the development of local talent and teams will recruit overseas to win. Then we have to look at the standard of officiating in our local leagues to know that if we are going to use the same officials we are doomed from the start. I am sure that they are thinking about using the wheel chair basketball referees but even those have their short comings and are in short supply for the whole country. Now, let’s touch on the local talent that we have at our disposal for a minute, you have the class of the 90s which includes the likes of Quentin Denyssen, Neo Mothiba and that generation but behind them we have bit part players that don’t have the exposure and the experience to compete at any international level. So the gap between good and mediocre players is widening by the year with the average to good players getting less and less. And if professional teams want to recruit they will have to tap into the university pool of players, only to find that they have to work around the tertiary calendars and scheduler if theses scholars. At the end of the day, school comes first and the rest after.. So no basketball during exam time or during class time. But wait, this is a professional league, so people will get paid so hopefully this includes the players and coaches, is it going to be enough to make a living off it? The focus should be about the youth and the future of the game is in them, not in the 90s generation… Let’s hope that the stakeholders and those in power use this opportunity to fix the game from the ground up and not the other way around.

Some of us that have been in the game for long know that the only reason we have a sudden interest from the government, sponsors and other parties is because basketball is marketable, it is attractive and potentially the most untapped market in this country and in Africa. The sad thing is that we have people involved in BSA now that were under investigation while in government, we have former soccer administrators and we know in what state our soccer finds itself in at the moment; so now these administrators are under the microscope and let’s hope that this magnifying glass makes them do the right thing for our sport.

In the meantime tournaments are taking place and we carry on with our day to day duties while our passion keeps taking a part-time pace in our lifes.

USSA has come and gone and even after a few years without following the event, the mood and murmurs out there are that overall it was a very successful event. Maybe it is because the universities are involved and they run this tournament with minimal involvement from the mother body.

Going back to BSA, a lot was made of the suspension of a few members last year but no update or follow up was made after that with most of the suspended members still active in our basketball. Talk about accountability, and what about the national programs that seem to have stopped with no major event this year.

Well it is almost time to welcome in a new wave of optimism for the game but let’s hope that unlike the previous waves it doesn’t come crashing down like the last few attempts to revive the game.

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There Are 3 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Faizel r green says:

    Lets sit down and discuss, how we can make this work, cause clearly politics of past still lurks in this industry……..lets work work a way forward.

  2. Lebohang says:

    Sorry to interfere but is there a way for me to join this league and if there is how do I join it please help me because I know I am very good and I have been told by coaches the only problem is that I am not supported enough to make it big