Thursday, 24 September 2009

British Basketball must await wild-card fate

British Basketball faces an anxious wait before learning whether Great Britain will receive a wild-card place at next year’s world championships in Turkey. FIBA president Bob Elphinston has confirmed GB will be considered for one of the four available berths, despite exiting this month’s Eurobasket finals in the opening round.

However sources close to the sport’s governing body have indicated that Britain’s chances remain slim unless a UK television deal is secured for the global showpiece. And with Nigeria, the Dominican Republic and Lithuania understood to be at the front of the queue, British Basketball chairman Roger Moreland admits the lobbying has already begun to advance the national side’s case for inclusion as part of the build-up to the 2012 Olympics.

“We’re having discussions with FIBA on a range of issues,” Moreland revealed. “But certainly the real sense is that we’re at this level, we want to stay at this level and we have to progress at this level. And the way to do that is by continuing to play against top-level competition every single summer.”

FIBA, who have yet to confirm that Britain will receive a host berth at the London Olympics, will announce their decision on December 13.

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