Keep up to date with all the basketball news from Wales and further afield.
Have you played for Wales, even if it was just in one tournament?
6 April 2021
According to the WRU, there have been 1,164 capped men at full international level. The first was James Bevan in 1881. He played for Cardiff and Newport, and was studying at St. John’s, Cambridge when he was selected to play in Wales’ first ever international match, against England in London. There were no trials before the game and some players invited to play did not show up, which is why some spectators with tenuous links to Wales (including Bevan) ended up playing in an 82-0 loss. Bevan never played again for Wales, although the trophy played for between Wales and Australia is named after him. Mention of Bevan is in no way an attempt to align the organisational abilities of the embryonic WRU with Basketball Wales!
One of the latest WRU player to receive their first cap was Ioan Lloyd in November 2020, who is a former school team mate of FIBA U16 basketball internationals Rhys Mackenzie and Mason Grady!
For Basketball Wales, we have no formal lists that documents our former and current international players, men or women, senior or juniors. A challenge was set during lockdown to start listing our international players, something that I, with a work background in research and data collection and a connection to basketball in Wales, could not resist!
A little digging and research (which is a technical term for Googling!) soon showed that this could be a mammoth task.
The FIBA website, although slow and complex, has proved to be a great resource, providing roster lists dating back to 1988 for a range of teams. Various Facebook groups for Wales, England and Scotland provided a number of links, and photos, to various Home Nation tournaments and other international games.
I have restricted my list to full international fixtures only (either within formal competitions or ‘friendly’ internationals), from U16s up to seniors, for both men and women.
So far, the Basketball Wales equivalent of James Bevan is Paul Barclay, who played in a 1964 fixture at Craiglockhart, on the outskirts of Edinburgh, at a Home Nations tournament. This tournament also acted as the trials for the British Olympic team ahead of the 1964 Olympics in Rome.
Our roster for this tournament also shows that the search for height in Welsh basketball has been a long endeavour!
Our last new cap is Lucy Stradling (No. 4), who went to Moldova in 2019 with the U16 girls FIBA squad. They returned with 2-2 record, also including a fixture against Scotland, who we seem to play a lot!
My list is now over 1,100 capped players across the different teams. Some players appear only once. At the other end of the scale, Sophie Evans has represented Wales in at least ten FIBA tournaments.
Where to now?
Having picked off the low-hanging fruit, my search has become a little more difficult. I have, to paraphrase Donald Rumsfeld, some known unknows and some unknown unknowns! For instance, I know that there were annual Home Nation tournaments for U17s in the 1970s, 80s and 90s but I am missing rosters and team lists for many of these years.
And then there are the unknown unknowns. I have large gaps for senior women fixtures and very few records for any games played before 1990. There are some good sources of information still to access. Once restrictions allow, a trip to the National Basketball Museum at Worcester University will unearth a whole range of information about previous Home Nations tournaments.
There are still some sources and contacts to use from Facebook and other social media streams, but these are mostly from opposition teams. My biggest untapped source is now the Welsh basketball community – you!
If you have, or know anyone else who has, memorabilia and information from Wales international fixtures and tournaments, I’d love to hear from you. I’m interested in two things:
Firstly, to add to my list of international players, so team lists from any international fixtures would be gratefully received.
Secondly, I want to add context to this list, to make it a bit more human. This means photos, stories, programmes, posters, videos of any sort would also be gratefully received. Also, if you are an ex-international, contact details would be really useful.
It would be great if Basketball Wales could establish contact with as many former players as possible. Plans are afoot for a Basketball Wales celebration dinner in 2022 and it would be wonderful if many of our former players could attend to meet up with former colleagues and coaches, for old teams who went to overseas tournaments to take whole tables at the dinner together.
So, if you have any material or memories from past internationals, please get in contact. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
My ultimate aim is to produce an online list of all capped players along with a website of photos, stories, memories and other memorabilia to champion our former internationals. And if the mood takes me, I might turn it into a book!
And if anyone knows of Paul Barclay, it would be great to award him the first ever Basketball Wales cap – unless anyone knows of an international games before 1964!
Jr. NBA to offer new virtual programming to youth players across the UK in collaboration with basketball federations in England, Scotland and Wales
18 March 2021
The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced the launch of Jr. NBA Stay Active – Online, a series of virtual basketball and life skills development sessions for young people across the UK. The new virtual program, launched in collaboration with Basketball England, Basketball Scotland and Basketball Wales, will tip off on Monday 22 March 2021 via OWQLO, the official Jr. NBA League app.
Jr. NBA Stay Active – Online will offer boys and girls the opportunity to participate in basketball development sessions alongside their peers from across the UK and under the guidance of former NBA players, current and former British professional players and staff from all three basketball federations. In addition to helping young boys and girls develop on the court, the program will feature live Q&As with current and former professional players and provide off-court resources to foster leadership and life skills development.
“We are delighted to collaborate with the basketball federations in England, Scotland and Wales to deliver impactful virtual basketball development programming to youth across the UK,” said NBA EME Associate Vice President of Basketball Operations Neal Meyer. “The program will be widely accessible through the OWQLO App, and provide young boys and girls with the tools and resources to stay connected to the game, develop their skills and learn the core values of basketball.”
Before transitioning to virtual programming in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Jr. NBA Basketball England League featured 16 leagues for 11- and 12-year-old boys and girls in seven cities and regions across England. In 2019, Basketball Scotland hosted two Jr. NBA Leagues and launched the first-ever Jr. NBA Wheelchair League.
The Jr. NBA Stay Active – Online program marks the Jr. NBA’s first collaboration with Basketball Wales.
The Jr. NBA is the league’s global youth basketball program for boys and girls, teaching the fundamental skills as well as the core values of the game – teamwork, respect, determination and community – at the grassroots level in an effort to help grow and improve the youth basketball experience for players, coaches and parents. During the 2019-20 season, the NBA and its teams reached 14.5M youth around the world through in-person events and clinics, before transitioning to virtual programming and online youth basketball development events that generated more than 210M views from youth players and fans in 118 countries.
For more information on the Jr. NBA League in the UK, please visit http://jrnbaleague.uk/
About the NBA
The NBA is a global sports and media business built around four professional sports leagues: the National Basketball Association, the Women’s National Basketball Association, the NBA G League and the NBA 2K League. The NBA has established a major international presence with games and programming available in 215 countries and territories in more than 50 languages, and merchandise for sale in more than 100,000 stores in 100 countries on six continents. NBA rosters at the start of the 2020-21 season featured 107 international players from 41 countries. NBA digital assets include NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA League Pass. The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with 1.9 billion likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms. Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognised youth-serving organisations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.
FIBA Europe coaching certificate (FECC), looking for candidates
18 February 2021
Basketball Wales has the opportunity to nominate candidates for the next round of the FIBA Europe coaching Certificate (FECC) commencing this summer (COVID-19 restrictions permitting).
All applications are submitted to the British Basketball Federations who will then apply on our behalf to FIBA for candidate consideration. You can get more information on the FIBA website.
The curriculum for the FIBA Europe Coaching Certificate has been developed by some of the best-known coaching experts in youth basketball. The mentor of this programme is Svetislav Pesic, widely recognised as one of the most successful basketball coaches in Europe and the world.
Participant conditions and criteria for selection
Nominees must be actively coaching young players in Wales. In addition, nominees must be:
- Currently affiliated coach with Basketball Wales
- Committed to attending and completing all elements of the FECC.
- Coaching within the Basketball Wales National Team Programme or GB National Team or a Head Coach in a Basketball Wales affiliated club
- Coaches should remain coaching within a Welsh programme for the duration of the FECC qualification.
- Hold a Level 3 Qualification (desirable)
The successful candidate must:
- Complete a comprehensive written report detailing coaches learning, new skills, techniques and drills on each week to be circulated to all Basketball Wales coaches.
- Deliver presentations to Basketball Wales club coaches to share learning.
To receive the FIBA Europe Coaching Certificate each participant must:
- Attend all three clinics in full
- Complete 2 written papers
- Pass a practical examination
- Pass the oral examination
- Pass the final written exam
Candidates will need to cover all accommodation/travel expenses themselves. There is no coach tuition fee for the FECC. However, Basketball Wales will reimburse agreed transportation costs up to a maximum of £350.00 on completion of nominated coaches agreed conditions above.We have an extremely tight deadline to submit our candidates to the British Basketball Federation.
If you would like to be considered as a candidate please can you email back an expression of interest to Basketball Wales. Decisions on selection will be made on the application submitted (no interviews) due to the timescales.
Basketball Wales performance in the safe hands of Simon Fisher
Basketball Wales would like to announce a change on the Board of Directors.
We are delighted that Simon Fisher has accepted the position of Director National Teams following the announcement that Cameron Seeley was standing down due to work commitments
Simon will be working along side Stef Collins, Women and Girl’s Performance Director.
Some of you might know Simon, but if not here’s more about him…in his own words.
“I have been involved in the game for approximately 35 years, ever since I started watching and playing in Birmingham. I developed a passion for the game through my father, and ever since I have found many roles in the game, at all levels, from playing (badly) at local league level in the West Midlands, to officiating in the game, then starting coaching at Stoke Basketball Club / Staffordshire University at 19 years old.
That decision to start coaching ultimately led me to this role working with Wales. I have followed a path working with Basketball England national teams, as a Team Manager, Assistant Coach and then Head Coach of England U16s from 2007 to 2011. That experience of European competition, then continuing to be involved in England development programmes up to 2014, led to an appointment with Wales U16s as Head Coach and a successful campaign at the 2018 U16 FIBA European Championships Division C . Alongside working with national teams, I have coached Club basketball from U16s to Senior Men, with Birmingham, Shropshire, Bromsgrove, Derby and Manchester.
My experiences within my professional career as a Sports Development Officer, provided me with an understanding of systems and structures. I am now the Academy Lead for British Wheelchair Basketball, working with the performance athletes, as well as having the honour of Team Managing the Senior Men’s Team – attending European and World Championships.
This role with Basketball Wales allows me to invest back into the sport I love, provide some guidance and advice to others. I won’t and don’t have all the answers, however I believe in a collaborative approach, as we can achieve more together. As we develop the programme for Wales, it is my belief we can together provide the structures to provide a positive experience for all, building on the excellent work that Cameron Seeley started.”
Basketball Wales would like to extent their thanks to Cameron Seeley for all his work and we wish him well in his new job and hopefully we will continue to see him at a support local and national basketball in Wales.
Basketball Wales takes to the airwaves with SW20 Radio
6 January 2021
We are delighted to announce that basketball news will be heard across the airwaves thanks to a new partnership between Basketball Wales and a new community online radio station SW20 Radio.
Commenting on today’s announcement Rhian Mackenzie, Communications Director at Basketball Wales said:
“It will be great to work with SW20 Radio to bringing basketball stories to more people across Wales. This will become the place to hear all the latest results from the South Wales and North Wales leagues as well as news of our junior and senior national teams and schools’ competitions.”
Also commenting on this new venture Barrie Jones co-founder of SW20 Radio said:
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Basketball Wales. We are all about bringing the community together and reporting on Welsh basketball results and events will raise awareness of this growing sport to our listeners.
We have music and a variety of shows for everyone and as basketball is a sport for all ages, the partnership seemed like the perfect match, this is a great opportunity for SW20 and we are excited about enjoying a lengthy relationship with Basketball Wales.”
There are several ways you can hear the great music, chat and now basketball news on SW20 Radio – online, by downloading the app and via smart speakers.
Basketball Wales welcomes new Chief Medical Officer
15 October 2020
Basketball Wales is delighted that Mr Stuart Roy, MBChB MPhil(Cantab) FRCSEd(Tr & Orth) is joining our team. He will be taking on the role of Chief Medical Officer.
He will be part of our performance group, advising our national team coaches and players as well as helping to shape our policies especially regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and our pathway to a return to play.
As part of his role, he has already worked with both Cardiff Met Archers women’s teams, ensuring that they are safe to resume contact basketball as they compete in the new WBBL season and in the Basketball England National Basketball League Division One.
Speaking on his new appointment, Stuart said: “I am very pleased to be undertaking the Chief Medical Officer role for Basketball Wales. I have a huge passion for sport, and this is a very exciting time to join as year on year basketball is growing in both popularity and participation across the whole of Wales.
I look forward to contributing to the development and success of the national teams and to help guide the Board in their decision-making.”
Stuart is currently a Consultant in Trauma and Orthopaedics at the Royal Glamorgan Hospital, specialising in sports injuries and all aspect of knee surgery. He is also a partner at Cardiff Sports Orthopaedics. This is a partnership of consultant orthopaedic surgeons based at Spire Cardiff Hospital in South Wales specialising in the diagnosis and treatment of bone, joint and musculoskeletal disorders including sports injuries, degenerative joint disease and arthritis.
Commenting on Stuart’s appointment; Stef Collins, Women and Girls Basketball Director said: “I am looking forward to working with Stuart and learning from him. As Chief Medical Officer he will be integral part of the team, as advisor in our governance development, working with myself, the Performance Director and our coaching staff as well as team managers and players.
His vast expertise and knowledge in sports treatment and prevention, and with the inclusion of multidisciplinary practitioners will be invaluable to Basketball Wales and for well-being of our players.”
Stuart Roy’s appointment is in a voluntary capacity.
Basketball Wales is delighted to continue working with GIVOVA and Eurologo Wales
14 December 2020
Since 2015, Basketball Wales national teams have been proudly wearing their GIVOVA kit at both international and domestic tournaments. And this is set to continue with a new multi-year partnership.
Kate Gordos, Basketball Wales Commercial Director said: “We are delighted to continue the great working partnership we have with GIVOVA, making sure our national team players have good quality, affordable kit to wear at training and to wear with pride when they are representing their country at tournaments. GIVOVA will also be providing clothing for our coaches, referees and table officials.”
Mr Giovani Acanfora, GIVOVA’s President stated: “We are honoured to continue the partnership with Basketball Wales. In this very complex historical moment, sport teaches us that we must never give up or stop. To aim high and overcome difficulties, commitment and work together are needed. GIVOVA will still and proudly support Basketball Wales, in the name of the healthy and shared values of sport. Good luck to all!”
None of this would be possible without the support of our retail partner Eurologo Wales, based in Bridgend, South Wales. They have been working with Basketball Wales for a few years and in that time, they have supplied national teams with everything they need.
Stephen Vickers from Eurologo added: “We’re looking forward to continuing working with Basketball Wales as their sole retail supplier. We have worked hard to make ordering kit easier by creating an online shop for players and officials as well as working with individual teams on bespoke items for trips and tournaments both at home and overseas.
As a company we love seeing players representing Wales with passion, wearing kit we have provided.
We have some exciting new products in the pipeline for players and supporters alike. Including providing kit to the U14, U16 and U18 boys with their new sponsor, Combine Academy.”
For more information about sponsorship opportunities on Basketball Wales kit, please email email@example.com
Basketball Wales name DYNAMIK as their official sports flooring partners in a multi-year agreement
4 September 2020
DYNAMIK, leading UK indoor sports flooring specialists, have been appointed the official sports flooring partner to Basketball Wales for the next 5 years.
Commenting on this partnership, Basketball Wales CEO Gavin Williams said,
“We are excited to be entering into this partnership with DYNAMIK. We hold in high regard the benefits of this collaboration. DYNAMIK`s vast technical expertise in sports flooring is second to none, and the quality of their services and products are unrivalled. This is an extremely positive move forward to help further build on the successes of Welsh basketball.”
Craig Jack, Commercial Director for DYNAMIK Sport commented:
“Welcoming Basketball Wales to our family of NGB partners is something we are all extremely proud of.
Our team at DYNAMIK know how important it is to provide sporting NGBs, clubs, schools and leisure facilities with trusted advice on sports flooring installation and maintenance and aftercare.”
The partnership will ensure that there is dedicated and tailored support for the basketball community in Wales that includes advice on maintenance and facility standards. To strengthen the increasing popularity and participation of basketball in Wales, DYNAMIK will also be investing in the Welsh Schools National Tournament from September 2020, and the Annual National Awards event commencing August 2021.
For more information about this partnership please contact our Commercial Director, Kate Gordos firstname.lastname@example.org
Wilson is the official basketball supplier for Basketball Wales
20 August 2020
Basketball Wales has appointed global brand Wilson Sports Goods Co as their official basketball supplier in a multi-year agreement. Commenting on this partnership, Gavin Williams, CEO of Basketball Wales said;
“We are thrilled to be continuing and developing our collaboration with Wilson. We place a high value on the importance of partnering with those who share our passion for basketball in Wales’ vision for the grassroots initiatives, our leagues, clubs and the national elite programmes are shared by Wilson. We look forward to working with them, to further build on the successes.”
Commenting on today’s announcement, Andy Medding, Wilson Team Sports UK & IRL said:
“We look forward to building upon our partnership with Basketball Wales and help support their basketball programmes and grassroot initiatives. We are excited to see Wilson basketball products support coaches and athletes at all levels across Wales for years to come.”