ISTANBUL (2010 FIBA World Championship) – At the closing press conference of the FIBA World Championship FIBA Secretary General and IOC Member Patrick Baumann told media that this edition had been the most successful in the Championship’s 60 year history.
“We are on the point of closing the most successful FIBA World Championship ever,” he said.
“I believe that it has been the most competitive tournament ever. The Turkey v Serbia game last night was an incredible show of spirit and performance.”
TV figures show that an expected 1 billion people in nearly 200 countries watched the games.
Overall TV exceeded both those of the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan and 2009 EuroBasket in Poland.
“In Lithuania, three of the games have produced the highest rated programmes of 2010, all higher than the 2010 FIFA World Cup Final, while ratings in China show 65 million people tuned in for the China - Greece game during the Preliminary,” Round Baumann noted.
Online figures also show an exceptional level of coverage, journalists were told.
30 million visitors have been to the FIBA Turkey 2010 website, while more than 100,000 people are members of FIBA's Facebook page. The number of Twitter followers doubled over the course of the Championship.
Baumann said that the fight against doping had also been one of the successes of this edition.
“At this Championship, we have put in place a rigorous anti-doping programme to ensure that basketball is cleaner than ever. Around 100 tests have been performed randomly and so far all have been negative.”
Baumann then told the attending media that FIBA was already setting its sights to the future, including continuing to develop the new FIBA33 format.
“The success of FIBA33 at the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore shows it has huge potential to grow as a true Olympic Sport. It is possible it will gain full Olympic status in 2016 and help encourage a younger audience to follow our sport.”
“We have also already begun planning for the World Championship in 2014 in Spain,” Baumann concluded.