The British Basketball Federation (BBF) has issued a 10-year licence for the Women’s British Basketball League (WBBL) to continue as the professional platform for the female game in the UK.
Granting the licence for the next decade, the BBF is looking forward to seeing the WBBL develop both on and off the court. The parties have set key milestones to ensure standards and performance of clubs and the league grow over the period of the licence term.
The new arrangement comes at an exciting time for female hoops, with the profile of the game arguably at its highest in recent memory. This is due to the exploits of Great Britain at the FIBA Women’s EuroBasket 2019 when they made a historic run to the semi-finals of the prestigious competition.
Chema Buceta and his players, many of whom compete in the WBBL, will now be attempting to qualify for the FIBA Women’s EuroBasket 2021 starting from November. They will then look to punch a ticket for Tokyo 2020 via the FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournaments which are scheduled for February.
The success of the senior women and evolution of the WBBL has been underpinned by grass-roots initiatives – most notably, the All Girls campaign which was successfully launched by Basketball England in recent weeks. The campaign has been supported by WBBL who are keen to ensure it delivers the aims of encouraging more girls to pick up a basketball and enjoy playing the sport – as well as looking up to role models playing in the WBBL and for Great Britain.
Nicky Shaw, BBF Director (Operational) commented: “It’s great that along with the BBL, the WBBL is to continue as a recognised professional league. The recent Great Britain successes just proves that the women’s game is gaining wider recognition globally.
“Our own women’s game goes from strength to strength (not just at the international level) and the BBF are also looking forward to working on the Her World Her Rules campaign alongside the WBBL and Basketball England.”
Meanwhile Jim Saker, WBBL Chair added: “I am delighted that we have a stable base upon which to build the women’s professional game in this country over the next decade.
“It gives us the opportunity to help deliver success on the international stage, but also at grass roots level through initiatives such as the Basketball England’s All Girls campaign that was launched last month.”