SAN JUAN (Puerto Rico) - The President of the Puerto Rico Basketball Federation (FBPUR, for its Spanish acronym), Mr. Yum Ramos, saw in the FIBA 3x3 World Cup Qualifier this weekend another reason to incorporate this modality to the development plan of youth categories in the island.
This is also encompassed within the international success of Puerto Rico national men's team, who achieved their qualification to the 3x3 World Cup, which will take place in Amsterdam on June 18-23. Their excellent participation in the elite and open categories featured some of the best basketball players of the island.
“The Federation's objective is that in coming years the youth category tournaments of the ages of 7 and 8 years play 3x3 instead of basketball,” said Ramos to FIBA.basketball. “There all children have the chance to touch the ball, to shoot at the basket, to defend; it's a much simpler game where both girls and boys will have more fun.”
Ramos also sustained that the Boricuas’ success — including their gold medal in the 2018 Central American and Caribbean Games in Barranquilla — is the result of FBPUR's work to develop the discipline since his arrival.
“When I was appointed President of the Federation, we were 82 in the world. We're now 34. That means that this Federation has indeed the emphasis that this basketball modality deserves.”
And that's not all. The President previewed the upcoming efforts of the Federation in the core and formative areas, which include celebrating other tournaments and training technical staff as part of their plans to completely regulate organized basketball in the island.
“The intermediate league tournaments are coming. The women's league tournament is underway. We're availing the basketball tournaments that follow the Federation's rules and that's important to be able to have some influence on referees, table officials and coaches. We've certified more than a thousand coaches, we've certified more than 500 referees; so, we're little by little building the structure to control basketball in Puerto Rico,” stated FBPUR's President.
Mr. Ramos, a lawyer, arrived at the position in 2016 after a failed attempt in 2014. He took the opportunity to reiterate the Federation's focus of directing youth categories more toward recreation and less toward competition. These efforts have already started with the modification of the rules that govern the mini basketball tournament.
“Youth categories are meant for fun. We have to leave competition aside. We must lower that aggressiveness there is in the courts, and we must allow boys and girls to have fun. From 12 (years) onward we may then start the competitive part. All leagues in Puerto Rico must play in an organized fashion. We must stop expecting children to compete just for the sake of competing, and instead have them compete following a purpose. First comes fun and then development,” he concluded.