French federation demands guarantees over Russia

The declaration affects basketball players if they compete in Russia or Belarus
French federation demands guarantees over Russia

The French basketball authorities have announced a national team ban on any players who choose to appear for teams in Russia or Belarus.

The step was announced by the press service of the French basketball federation (FFBB) on Monday, and declared that “the players and staff of the France Teams will no longer be selectable if they sign a contract with a Russian or Belarusian club, as long as the conflict [in Ukraine] is ongoing.”

The FFBB noted that Russian and Belarusian teams are currently banned by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) from all competitions under its auspices.

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French basketball bosses added that their decision “applies to players, players, staff members who have already signed with a Russian or Belarusian club.”

“To this end, all delegations selected in the Senior Men's and Women's France Team are invited to sign a sworn certificate to participate in international gatherings and competitions,” it added.

“Players and staff members will have to sign this certificate, stating that they are not engaged and will not engage with a Russian or Belarusian club for the duration of the conflict with Ukraine.

“It is indicated that if this commitment is not respected, the player or staff member will no longer meet the selection criteria for the next international deadlines, including the 2024 Olympic Games.”

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French stars competing for Russian teams include Louis Labeyrie, who has signed for UNICS in Kazan, and Livio Jean-Charles, who recently penned a deal with CSKA Moscow.

The French basketball authorities follow federations across others sports in imposing national team bans on athletes who continue to play for Russian teams.

That includes ice hockey, where the federations in Sweden, Finland and Latvia are among those to reject players for national team duty should they be based in Russia.

In the case of Latvia, the ban came after the issue was decided upon at parliament level.

In football, Poland announced that defender Maciej Rybus would not be considered for national team selection ahead of the 2022 World Cup after he agreed a contract at Spartak Moscow.

Original Article