Basketball federation sets sights on Olympics – introduces courses to improve proficiency of referees
Eighteen basketball coaches attended a level-1 Referee Clinic over the weekend under the guidance of professional instructor, Jackson Haufiku, at the Basketball Artists School in Windhoek.
The weekend’s Referee Clinic, the first of its kind, served as curtain raiser for further referee coaching as part of a 3-level programme between the Namibian Basketball Federation (NBF) and the Federation of International Basketball Associations (FIBA). Once aspiring referees have completed the full programme, they can advance to professional refereeing which is internationally recognised.
The Namibian Basketball Federation said it is their intention to improve the quality of officials for all basketball leagues in the country, senior and school leagues alike.
Focusing mainly on the schools league, the one-day clinic touched on the basic rules of the game and what the sport is. The clinic covered theoretical exercises as well as practical applications.
Petrina Aron, Mantius Amukoshi and Tamara !Gaoses served as assistant instructors to Mr Haufiku who said this is also an initiative for the growth of youth and female leadership in the Federation and basketball in general.
The Federation strives to provide the know-how and necessary skills and once properly acquired, FIBA offers the international platform for these skills to be put to the test.
!Gaoses is so far the first internationally recognized female 3×3 referee and the Federation said it hopes to create more success stories such as hers. This qualification has allowed !Gaoses to officiate at the U18 3X3 IBF Young Lions Cup, held in Botswana earlier this year.
Pondo Nailenge, a male referee with the same qualification, now coaches players and officials in the northern regions.
NBF Secretary General Ramah Mumba said: “With more officials trained, more games can be played to help boost the international ranking of Namibia on the FIBA 3X3 World Ranking website. The more games played, the better the country’s ranking becomes, and the higher the chances are for Namibia to be part of the Olympic Games in the near future.”
3×3 basketball is an officially recognized Olympic sport code offering a great opportunity not only for players to qualify but also for local officials. “Staying up to standard with the new basketball rules put in place by FIBA, Namibia is well on its way to the Olympics,” said Mumba.