FIBA Europe Secretary General Nar Zanolin highlighted the success of FIBA Europe’s campaign to promote the women’s game last week in Valencia.
Prior to the EuroLeague Women’s All Star Game, Zanolin spoke at length during a press conference about the importance of women’s basketball to FIBA Europe.
“At FIBA Europe, we have to look out for both genders. Approximately 50 percent of our participants our women, so it’s our obligation to take care of them,” he said.
||Women’s basketball deserves this type of promotion.
This effort to take care of women’s players has been evidenced by the Year of Women’s Basketball, which was launched one year ago and will culminate at EuroBasket Women 2007 in Italy.
Despite the upcoming end to the project, FIBA Europe’s commitment to the female game will continue.
“We will be taking the ‘Year of’ out of the name, but women’s basketball will still be highlighted by FIBA Europe,” Zanolin said.
Zanolin detailed some of the successes from the first year of the project.
“The logo is visible throughout Europe and is becoming more and more associated with our efforts,” he said.
“In addition, 15 countries have launched the Year of Women’s Basketball in their respective countries and 15 countries have appointed special ambassadors. These numbers will increase as we go further along with the project.”
FIBA Europe has also started a new Women’s Department, which is being headed by former player Radmila Turner. Year of Women’s Basketball Project Manager Esther Wender will also continue to work on the development of women’s basketball for FIBA Europe.
|FIBA Europe Secretary General Nar Zanolin, FEB President Jose Luis Saez and Elisa Aguilar at the press conference before the EuroLeague Women All Star Game.|
“Women’s basketball deserves this type of promotion,” Zanolin added.
Zanolin also took part in the second Year of Women’s Basketball Congress, aimed at Elite Basketball. A total of 55 participants from 23 countries attended the Congress.
One of the speakers, Jean Pierre Siutat, President of the French Women’s League declared, “It is enjoyable and interesting to be a part of this. We all want to get better and grow and by taking part in this form of exchange, we can learn from each and get better.”
One of the major topics of discussion was using new technology to increase the promotion of the women’s game. FIBA Europe IT Manager Nick Marzoli went through a presentation about the possibilities to offer live streaming of games on the internet. The EuroLeague Women All Star Game was broadcast in its entirety on fibaeurope.com.
Other topics during the Congress included the harmonization of league calendars and social and promotional activities that countries can be involved in. FIBA Europe Women’s Commission member Elisabeth Cebrian, a former player herself, is currently working for the Spanish Federation and outlined some of the social and promotional acitivities for women’s basketball in Spain.
“The Congress served as an ideal platform to bring people together in order to update them on the achievements in the past year,” said Wender.
“In the same way, and even more importantly, it allowed us to brainstorm and come up with solutions so that we can further improve our promotion of the women’s game. We hope that the participants were able to take some of the good examples given at the conference home and apply them locally.”
During the press conference prior to the game, Jose Luis Saez, President of the Spanish Basketball Federation, and Elisa Aguilar, President of the Spanish Basketball Players Association, signed a contract renewing an agreement between the two parties.