ALEX FAIR THE ADVOCATE Basketball Tasmania chief executive Chris McCoy on Wednesday confirmed that conversations surrounding the North West Tall Timbers Thunder double-header worries were still taking place, but there was now a longer wait until a resolution can be found.
The Thunder’s worries stem from the requirement of having to share home game duties with the Launceston Tornadoes in Basketball Victoria’s senior elite competition, which would mean a reduction of home games and likely reduced revenue for the Thunder.
Originally it was believed a decision would be made by this week, but that will now not be the case, with McCoy saying a final ruling should be known by Christmas.
“As far as this season to playing double header with the Torns and Thunder, we are still in discussions with Basketball Victoria to how we can make that work best for our clubs financially,’’ he said on Wednesday.
“Rather than having six home games each, we are asking (Basketball Victoria) if there is the possibility they can keep 12 or whether there can be some sort of middle ground.
“But it is all taking a little bit longer now than we thought it would.
“I do know Basketball Victoria knocked back several other Victorian associations that wanted to join the league, but we should be proud of the fact we are at the starting gate at this stage.”
But despite a longer time-frame than first expected, McCoy didn’t believe there was any major reason to worry just yet.
“Basketball Victoria have just appointed an event manager (Basketball Geelong chief executive Dean Anglin) for the new league, whose primary focus will be on getting the league up and going,’’ he said.
“They haven’t even issues the license agreements yet, so there is no worry on it, but the word is they are wanting to get it right, which is understandable.
“I know time is passing and our teams are getting a bit anxious, but it is going to be another few weeks yet.
“I’d say it would have to be before Christmas though as teams will be getting into pre-season mode by that stage, so I’d hope in the next two or three weeks we’d have a further answer on it, but there is no definite timeline.
“These discussions are the finer details about how that works, and the multi-gender aspect is the difficult one coming from our history, but in time we hope we will resolve this going forward long-term, but for next year we need to make sure our teams our viable at the gate.
“If they were running six games in Ulverstone and Devonport and six games in Launceston, that looks like it would be a real strain for both clubs, so we need to work out how the home games will work next year.”
Thunder chairman Tony Barker has previously told Fairfax Media his side would not participate if it meant financial ruin for it.
“We will play in this competition if we think we are viable, but if we can’t find a model that supports our future, then we won’t be able to go in, it is as simple as that,’’ he said last month.