BE Awards 2023: Bev Guymon All Girls Inspiring Female of the Year

Cristina Stanciuca is the winner of the 2023 Bev Guymon All Girls Inspiring Female of the Year award.

When Stanciuca started work at Kent Crusaders six years ago there wasn’t a single girl involved with the club.

The present day paints a very different picture as U12, U14 and U16 Jnr. NLB teams with full squads now compete against well-established teams across the region.

Girls from as young are six are involved with the Mini-Ballers programme, girls-only festivals are run through her ‘Let’s Play Ball’ schools programme, girls-only training camps take place in school holidays, and a girls academy is launching at The Canterbury Academy in September 2024. 

Changing the landscape

"Through her vision, commitment and passion, the club now sees over 50 girls a week playing basketball," said Canterbury Head Coach Adam Davies.

"Cristina has been the driving force beyond this transformation, constantly challenging her coaching peers to raise the bar for basketball as an inclusive sport for girls as well as boys.

"Without her passion and dedication to create opportunities for girls in Kent, we believe none of the above would be in place."

Also a decorated coach at regional and national level, Stanciuca has played an inspiring role in the Aspire Programme, as well as winning the U16 Girls Home Nations tournament with England.

Delivering high-level sessions that challenge players to push themselves and fulfil their potential, Stanciuca's passion, energy and enthusiasm for improvement are infectious and she is a popular figure within the game.

Stanciuca took the award ahead of Yorkshire's Ghada Khattab and East's Charlotte Williams, both of whom made the top three in a highly-competitive field. Congrats to all, and to South East's Stanciuca.

Stanciuca's incredible efforts kick off a two week period where national recipients of the 2023 Basketball England Awards will be announced, with the talented coach and mentor getting proceedings underway in inspiring fashion.

Winners from across BE's ten regions were announced in March, with those recipients then shortlisted to narrow down the field for each national winner.

Stanciuca and others will be recognised for their achievements over the coming days, leading up to another cohort of selections receiving the prestigious "Services to Basketball" award on Sunday, 9 June 2024.