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How the state of basketball in India can be improved

1.67K   //    05 Jan 2015, 21:19 IST
Indian National Basketball team

Over the years, cricket and football dominated the sports scene in India. But basketball in India is making strides, not only being a hobby, but being a premier sport in the country. Indian basketball teams had participated in many international events, most recently was the 2014 Asian Games where they managed to enter the preliminary rounds. Though not gaining much success, Indian basketball has nowhere to go but up.

Development needs to be made across all age groups

Basketball in India is now gaining popularity vastly. It is being played in almost every school, although very few had considered following it professionally. Both men and women of all ages have been playing the sport. It has a considerable number of patrons which have given encouragement to the sport for the younger generation. Many government bodies have professional basketball teams in the country, who are working for the institution and can play for them.

Championship tournaments are also being held for senior, junior and youth levels. Unlike other countries that follow seasons, these championships are organized every year to cater to everyone who loves the sport. Usually, youth championship tournaments are being held during summers when children have their summer breaks.

I hope that more tournaments would be organized in more parts of the country especially in the rural areas. In this regard, more opportunity will be given to the youngsters to play the sport. This will also help other young players from all over the country to showcase their skills.

Basketball Federation of India (BFI) is the governing body of basketball in the country. It manages the sport at all levels in India. BFI conducts training camps and national tournaments for both men and women for various age groups. BFI is also conducting strong sub-junior and junior level programs. This will help them to prepare the next generation of Indian basketball players that will represent the country for international plays.

Association with NBA has given encouragament

Recently, the National Basketball Association (NBA) had visited India as part of their promotional tour to support the growth of basketball in the country. I think this is a great step towards promoting the sport all throughout the country. These rare opportunities that young aspirant basketball players will get will be a big confidence boost for them to pursue a career in the sport.

Imagine the exposure they can get by participating on international-level drills, how awesome is that? This can pave way for a breakthrough for Indian Basketball if someone will be scouted and be asked to play in the most prestigious basketball league on the planet.

Many basketball associations are now spread all over the country to work towards a common goal – to popularize basketball in the country. These associations are also helping in developing the overall infrastructure of the game to unearth potential world-class talents all over the country.

But I think it will all start with commitment. BFI should be very committed on working for the developmental growth of basketball in India. Big steps need to be taken to fulfill India’s potential in basketball.

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