MOSCOW - FIBA President, Mr Yvan Mainini, along with FIBA Secretary General and International Olympic Committee (IOC) Member, Mr Patrick Baumann, were in the Russian capital on Monday and Tuesday to meet with some of the country's leading sporting authorities and discuss the state of basketball at large.
Mr Mainini and Mr Baumann held talks with Russia Basketball Federation (RBF) President, Mr Alexander Krasnenkov, the Russian Sport Minister, Mr Vitaly Mutko, the President of the VTB United League and Chief of Staff of the President of the RBF, Mr Sergey Ivanov as well as FIBA Central Board member Sergey Chernov.
They discussed the status of Russian basketball following the successes at the London Olympic Games and also addressed other matters including the development of the regional VTB United League, future plans of FIBA to include 3x3 in the Olympics and the international basketball federation's competition calendar changes that will come into force in 2017.
The visit resulted in FIBA and the RBF signing the hosting agreement for the 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championships and discussed the interest signaled by the RBF to present a bid for the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup.
"Our visit was very important to understand the state of Russian Basketball, the need for its top clubs to generate revenues and the equally important objective to maintain competitive national teams," said Mr Baumann.
"Russian basketball has a long tradition of successes and, going back to the London Olympics through to the current 2012-13 club season, Russia has been very successful with both women and men's teams. However, this state of grace cannot be sustained unless there is a profound look into the future and a strong cooperation between all stakeholders in the Russian basketball family. In this context, all meetings we had here in Moscow were very valuable.
"Basketball is a popular sport and its appeal can be increased across the country. We look forward to having Russia as a key partner and player in FIBA's future development plans and in the governance structure of our sport."