Looking back at an eventful year
Dear basketball family,
In a few days we will start the NEW YEAR, so the time has come to take a quick look back at 2023.
A very eventful year both in the sporting area and in the area of leading our federation.
As always, we were able to carry out our European club competitions very successfully at the highest level with a fantastic Champions Cup Final 4 in Bemmel/the Netherlands between BSR Amiab Albacete and Thuringian Bulls.
The World Championship in Dubai was also very successful for Europe. In the women’s championship, the Netherlands were able to defend the world title and Great Britain won the silver medal in the men’s competition.
We had an excellently organized European Championship for Women and Men, division A, in Rotterdam, as part of the first European Para Championships in 2023, a new path into the future.
Congratulations to the Netherlands (women) and Great Britain (men) for successfully defending their European title, as well as runners-up Great Britain (women) and Spain (men) for their direct qualification for Paris 2024.
Our forum and congress with elections also took place as part of the European Championships in Rotterdam. I think the result is in the interest of our sport. The decisions taken will have a positive impact on our sport and the elected board will contribute significantly to the further development of wheelchair basketball in Europe and the World with new impulses and thinking “out of the box”.
Czech Republic won the European Championship, Men division C, in Sarajevo ahead of Portugal – congratulations on promotion to the B division.
At the beginning of October I had the honor of accepting an award with Enrique Alvarez Orcajo (Vice president) for IWBF Europe from the organization Amiab in Albacete in front of around 600 invited guests. IWBF Europe was awarded the social award for inclusion for its work in the area of wheelchair basketball. An award we can be proud of. An award that belongs to the entire wheelchair basketball family. Without the great work in the associations and clubs, these successes and this perfect integration would not be possible.
2024 will be challenging. First our European club competitions, then the all-important Repechage tournaments in Osaka, Japan for the women and Antibes, France for the men. The highlights will then be the Paralympic games Paris 2024. I wish many sporting success and I am convinced that Europe will be proud of you.
We must not forget our European Championships, Men division B, and our youth competitions U22 (men) and U24 (women), which will also take place in 2024.
Thanks goes to all the players, trainers and coaches; without you, IWBF Europe and European wheelchair basketball would not be so successful.
I would also like to thank my Executive board and especially Petr Tuček, who are doing great things and making the successful leadership of IWBF Europe possible through their work and commitment.
Wish you ALL, your families and loved ones a Merry Christmas and a good and above all healthy and peaceful NEW YEAR!
At Christmas we realize what the world could be like,
if you only wanted to.
President IWBF Europe