British Basketball Nets Olympic Funding Reprieve
The sport mounted a campaign after the awarding body announced in December that the sport would not receive any elite performance funding for the four-year cycle running up to Rio 2016.
An online petition gathered more than ten thousand signatures and the British NBA star Luol Deng wrote to the Prime Minister outlining his concerns over the sport’s future.
British Basketball’s performance chairman Roger Moreland said: “We are absolutely delighted with the decision of UK Sport today.
“They have acknowledged that we successfully presented compelling new performance data, which not only impressed the Board but made them recognise that we are potential podium contenders for 2020.”
He added: “This is a momentous day for British basketball and everyone who is connected with the sports, whether players, fans or officials.”
Wheelchair fencing has also been successful with its appeal – both sport’s funds are yet to be announced but will be released on a one year conditional basis with the following three years funding released only on the fulfilment of strict performance criteria.
Liz Nicholl, Chief Executive of UK Sport, said: “UK Sport is delighted to be able to confirm that we will now be investing in two additional sports for the Rio cycle, taking the overall total to 44 sports. These sports have credible medal potential for 2016 or 2020.”
Table tennis, indoor volleyball, sitting volleyball and wrestling, however, were all unsuccessful and will receive zero funding despite pleas for a re-think.