CANBERRA - Bob Elphinston has expressed his satisfaction in the wake of a successful conclusion to the first FIBA Oceania Board meeting to be held at the organisation's new headquarters in Canberra.
The FIBA Oceania President was left delighted after the two-day meeting, with a number of key decisions having been made.
"The office opening was a tremendous occasion and provided FIBA Oceania with the opportunity to host FIBA Commission members that reside in the Oceania zone and will be a part of this next evolution of our organisation," he said.
"It was an opportune moment to launch the Pacific Sports Partnership programme that will be piloted in Fiji during 2014 and the meeting was a highly-productive one.
"Several key decisions, including recommending to our members that we dissolve our organisation and move to the new FIBA structure during 2014 demonstrates our strong commitment to the proposed changes within FIBA," added Elphinston.
"This will bring the Oceania family even closer to the wider FIBA family."
During the meeting, the Board handed the hosting rights for the 2014 Pacific Youth Championships (27 November-6 December), to the city of Suva in Fiji. This was in accordance with the previous decision of the Board that it would be an open entry event for federations meeting the selection criteria and that the winners of both the men's and women's events would subsequently represent Oceania at the FIBA U19 World Championships for Men and Women in 2015.
It was confirmed that FIBA President Yvan Mainini and FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann will both be in attendance at the 2014 FIBA Oceania Congress in Sydney (9-11 May). The Board also agreed to provide financial assistance to those active federations attending the event.
There was recognition of continued investment in National Basketball Development Officers (NBDOs) as a key strategy to develop basketball in the zone. The ambition is to have 14 NBDOs employed in 2014, with a training programme to be conducted in Canberra in May 2014, which will be repeated every second year, commencing in 2015.
The Board also discussed FIBA Oceania's performance against its 2010-14 strategic plan, in order to develop commentary for the forthcoming Congress. It also agreed a strategic planning process for a new 2014-18 plan, with a final document due for October.
A decision was made to suspend the 2015 All Star Tour due to the time-frame between the Pacific Youth Championships in Fiji at the end of the year and the Australian Country Cup in January 2015. FIBA Oceania will now also review this programme and take a broader review of elite development of athletes and teams outside of New Zealand and Australia as part of the strategic planning process.
Finally, the Board reiterated its commitment to promoting and utilising 3x3 as an important tool for basketball growth in Oceania and is now preparing a detailed 3x3 strategy document for Board discussion by August 2014.