Namal set to put Basketball House in order
By Gamitha Dehipitiya
It is no secret that basketball in the country has experienced setbacks in the recent past. However, experts in the field point out that there had been a few reasons that had a direct impact on the sport leading to the lean patch in recent years.
In this background Ceylon Today reliably learns that the relevant parties had lodged an official complaint with Minister of Sports Namal Rajapaksa, which the Minister had passed on to the legal unit of the National Sports Council yesterday.
The Sports Minister had further informed the relevant sections in the sport that if the need arose he will not hesitate to even appoint an interim committee to oversee the day-to-day functions of the Sri Lanka Basketball Federation (SLBF).
Furthermore, it is also reliably understood that a probe is being conducted by the Police Unit attached to the Ministry of Sports concerning an alleged act of match-fixing by the Sri Lankan women’s basketball team during the last SAG Games.
Meanwhile, most basketball players are of the view that SLBF had failed to grant the necessary facilities for them to undergo professional training for both local and international events.
Among some of the other issues that has plagued domestic basketball has been the functioning of the SLBF without a President for the past two-year period since his resignation, the failure to conduct a domestic national basketball tournament, failure to follow necessary procedures while forming a national basketball squad, the non-availability of an accepted programme while appointing basketball coaches, and the non-availability of a concrete programme at District level towards the revival of the game.
It is also alleged that a sum of Rs 5 million that had been provided to the SLBF by the Ministry of Sports towards the training of sportsmen and women at the last SAG Games had been misappropriated by SLBF officials.
It is also alleged that as per the Constitution only those who had played the game could aspire to hold office, but some who had not even played the game had laid claim to posts in the recent past.