GB Maxibasketball squads head to Murcia International Masters

Three teams from the GB Maxibasketball programme have flown to Spain to compete in the final international masters basketball tournament of the year.

GB Maxis will compete in the Women’s 45+, Mens’ 45+ and Men’s 50+ categories from 3-5 December 2021 in the historic city of Cartagena, Murcia Region. 

They will face their peers playing in teams from some of the strongest European basketball nations of their era, namely Lithuania, Serbia, Italy, Germany, Ukraine and of course hosts Spain.

Regrettably, the most recent changes to UK and Spanish government Covid travel restrictions, forced a further three GB Maxis teams (Men’s 40+, Mens 50+ and Women’s 50+) to withdraw with players unable to secure further days away from their work commitments to isolate upon return from Spain.

The Men’s 45+ squad will be coached by Darren Oakey (Bristol) and Kieron Howell (Worcester) and have been drawn against teams from Ukraine, Spain and Uruguay whilst Richard Parker (Birmingham) will lead the Men’s 50+ squad who will shape up against opposition from Serbia, Lithuania and Ireland. The Women 45+ plus team, led by legendary Nottingham-based Coach Jimmy ‘Jumpshot’ Smith and former East London Royal David Mason, who also led the 2019 World Championship medal-winning 50+ team in Helsinki, will play against Old Stars and Mas Que Veteranas from Spain.

Former Birmingham Bullets junior coach, Richard Parker said:

“Although 50% of the squad were unable to travel out to Murcia due to the recently imposed travel restrictions, this will still be good test for our players and will certainly determine who is up for the challenge of securing their place, as a member of GB on the plane to Malaga next year. It will be their first competitive challenge as a squad, and with GB & Scotland former international Iain Maclean captaining the team in Murcia, it will be interesting to see who steps us”.

The GB Maxibasketball programme is recognised as part of the Basketball England performance pathway leading to GB representation, and this tournament forms part of the final selection phase for coaches to identify their final 12 players that will represent Great Britain at next years European Maxibasketball Championships. 

The programme is expected to be represented in Malaga in the male and female 35+, 40+, 45+ and 50+ competition categories (with the possibility of Men’s 55+ due to additional interest at this level). 

The GB Maxibasketball programme remains self-funded with players and staff committed to covering their participation.

The European Maxibasketball Championships 2022, in Malaga are organised by the International Maxibasketball Federation.