FIBA Europe and the Russian Basketball Federation have conducted their first joint seminar for national basketball referees.
Seminars have been organised in 7 Russian Federal districts, Moscow and Khimki (Central federal district), St. Petersburg (Northwestern federal district), Kazan (Volga federal district), Rostov-on-Don (Southern federal district), Yekaterinburg (Ural federal district), Vladivostok (Far East Federal district).
Miguel Betancor, FIBA Europe's Referee Co-ordinator and Sergey Fomin, a member of the FIBA Europe Technical Commission and the acting director of Referees Board of the Russian Basketball Federation, are also opening a referees centre at the Siberian federal district in Novosibirsk.
44 Referees and Commissioners attended the first seminar in Novosibirsk from seven regions of the Siberian federal district. The launching of the Centre was supervised by Viktor Tolokonsky, the Governor of Novosibirsk Oblast, Vladimir Gorodetsky, the Mayor of Novosibirsk, Sergey Chernov, the President of Russian Basketball Federation, Korney Gibert, the President of Novosibirsk Women's Basketball Club Dynamo-Energia, and Yuri Vasilyev, the President of Novosibirsk Men's Basketball Club Sibir Telecom Lokomotiv.
Miguel Betancor assisted with the instruction at each venue, and is supporting the Russian Federation in their programme to develop young referees, and train existing ones in the latest techniques and mechanics in European basketball. Included in one clinic were referees as young as 15, plus some already qualified as International Referees.
"This is an ongoing programme of co-operation and support of FIBA Europe to all countries in Europe, but this is our second visit to Russia following our first clinic in Khimki during the Russia Cup in March," said Betancor.
"We are committed to establishing a regional and national structure in Russia that will assist in the training and development of all referees, and because of the sheer size of this country, it is vitally important that we support them in their efforts," added Fomin.
The FIBA Europe Referee department has also assisted other federations in Ireland, England, Iceland, Romania and Cyprus, preparing referees and national observers for the forthcoming season.