Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Are administrative logjam in Indian basketball a thing of the past?

It won’t be totally out of place to say that Indian basketball has been very much strolling along the same path like Indian boxing. If administrative mess created a great deal of uncertainty for Indian boxing , the scenario in Indian basketball is isn’t any different. Indian basketball was rocked by two rival factions – one spearheaded by K Govindraj and another led by BJP MP Poonam Mahajan – both had conduct elections in Bengaluru and Pune earlier this year with both factions claiming to be the legitimate body to run the sport in the country. 

Just when it seemed that players would bear the brunt of this tussle between the two factions to run basketball in India, the K Govindraj faction managed to win support of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and also got a big boost from the Delhi High Court, which took cognisance of the body as the legitimate body to run the sport. These two developments have at least breathed some life into the sport, which appeared to have come to a grinding halt.

Over the recent months, there was anxiety among players as well as basketball lovers over whether camps and tournaments (domestic and international) will be held as per schedule but all that has been put a lid on as the K Govindraj-led Basketball Federation of India successfully held the 4th SABA Championship in Bengaluru in July this year, where the hosts retained the title. A month later, the Indian senior women cagers are participating in the 26th FIBA Asian Women’s Championship in Wuhan, China. Affairs in Indian basketball seemed like limping back to normalcy with the national senior men’s team hitting the drills at the preparatory camp in Nitti, near Udupi ahead of the 28th FIBA Asia Men’s Championships to be held in China in latter part of September.

Of course, it all good to see our national team taking part in international competitions, but one hopes that the rival Poonam Mahajan faction does offer any roadbloacks through the litigation route. It is learnt that the K Govindraj-led Basketball Federation of India is apparently aware that the rival body may pull up some aces up their sleeve to derail the running of the sport in the country and has recently shot off a letter to all its state units stating all is hunky-dory in Indian basketball. The said letter elaborated on the forthcoming tournaments that the K Govindraj-led Basketball Federation of India is planning to hold in the coming months.

There is little doubt that popularity of basketball has soared in the country in recent years and administrative logjam is the last thing Indian basketball needs in its pursuit of clambering up the world basketball ladder.
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