Basketball to go the Pro-League way

Indian basketball is set to get pro-league soon. The president of the Tamil Nadu Basketball Association, V.V.R. Raj Sathyen, confirmed that the association, with the support of the Basketball Federation of India, it is looking to start the league towards the end of the year or early next year.

Tamil Nadu Basketball Association officials in Chennai on Saturday.   -  K. V. Srinivasan

Indian basketball is set to get pro-league soon. The president of the Tamil Nadu Basketball Association, V.V.R. Raj Sathyen, confirmed that the association, with the support of the Basketball Federation of India, it is looking to start the league towards the end of the year or early next year.

Sathyen said the sport has all the ingredients to become popular among the people. “It is an arena sport. It is just for about 45 minutes, perfect for a league-based tournament and for viewership too,” he said.

Sathyen said the league would be based out of Chennai. “We plan to have a city-based league. It would help us in establishing connect among the fans too. We are looking at having eight to 16 teams in the inaugural edition. We would be having Chennai as the base and work the league around the city,” he added.

Sathyen said the idea cropped up keeping in mind the abundant talent in the state. “The whole idea is that, a player who spends about five years honing his skills needs some kind of credibility and a platform. A league provides the domestic players to show their skills on a longer term, unlike in a selection trial for about 10 minutes or so. Once we see players performing in the league, more challenges can be put out to him and that helps in developing the player and the sport together,” he explained.