Follow FIBA on Facebook
Puerto Rico's Yum Ramos: "The goal is to be among the top 10 National Federations"
SAN JUAN (Puerto Rico) - Although pleased with the performance of his national youth teams so far this year, the president of the Basketball Federation of Puerto Rico [FBPUR], Yum Ramos, clarified that there is still a lot of work to be done to convert the entity of Puerto Rico in one of the top10 National Federations in the world.
One of the most significant recent achievements is the sixth place in the FIBA Basketball U-19 World Cup. Because in that squad are precisely several of the youthful promises that the FBPUR hopes to incorporate its senior staff in the coming years, as is the case of Andrés Curbelo, Julian Strawther, and Jermaine Miranda.
"[It was] a great performance, they put the name of Puerto Rico on high, being in sixth place in the world in a category like Sub-19 is a great honor," Ramos told FIBA.basketball. "There is still a lot of work to be done, but the boys had great games against European powers such as Serbia and Russia, and we are the second-best [team] of America in the ranking in that tournament."
During the last months, the island has obtained other good results around the world with its youth quintets in both branches. Among these are the U16 men's team that reached sixth place in the FIBA Americas Championship in Brazil at the end of the beginning of June. For its part, the women's U16 version achieved a fourth place in the Championship of the Americas in Chile and just a week ago, the women's U17 team took the silver medal in the Centrobasket U17 held in San Juan.
"We are well satisfied with the results that are being seen," said Ramos. "However, we have to keep working, we have to continue fine-tuning to reach the goal that is to be among the 10 best national federations in the world."
Among the main drawbacks and challenges of the organization, Ramos highlighted the economic aspect, as one of many times that could limit the follow-up work provided to the youth teams.
"Always the economic problem [is a challenge]. Find the money to fund the programs to find skills for those boys and not to be left without participation after they finish the age of 19, which is the last competition [juvenile]. It is always a challenge and continues to seek and develop players who have the stature to continue competing for face to face with European and Asian teams, "said Ramos.
SUCCESSFUL NOVICE TOURNAMENT
On the other hand, Ramos was also pleased with the national tournament of the FBPUR for the category novices [15-16 years] that counted on the participation of 154 teams and extended from the month of April to June. The tournament could represent one of the main talent banks of the FBPUR for the preparation of national youth teams.
"We are very satisfied with the novice tournament. We are making adjustments in the way the tournament runs and the itineraries so that the clubs are more comfortable. But it fulfilled the purpose of the federation, which is the massification of sport in those ages of 14,15 and 16 years that is so important, "said Ramos.
Also, the federation leader reiterated its commitment to change the vision of the smaller categories on the island, emphasizing more in the recreational part of the sport and leaving for more mature stages, the vision of competences. Ramos also indicated the need for parents to be involved in the process, to achieve a change in the mentality of young players.
"The smaller categories we have to change the focus a bit and get the parents to understand what the focus and purpose of the smaller categories are. That beyond competition and win or lose, we have to develop and that children enjoy the games, to learn the sport in a proper way and with fundamentals. Do not play for playing, but play with a purpose, "said Ramos.