Sport

GC Blaze pulls out of NBL

Action from the IINET NBL round 2 clash between the Gold Coast Blaze and Cairns Taipans.
Action from the IINET NBL round 2 clash between the Gold Coast Blaze and Cairns Taipans. Scott Powick / SMP Images

THE Gold Coast Blaze has withdrawn from the National Basketball League.

Basketball Australia confirmed the withdrawal on Wednesday after the club's administrators were given until July 13 to demonstrate they could meet all necessary licensing requirements.

The owners were considering a community partnership model to save the GC Blaze but on Tuesday night the club's owners advised Basketball Australia they had decided to withdraw from the NBL.

"To be frank, this is hugely disappointing - it's unfortunate for the club's players and fans that the owners have made the decision to withdraw from the NBL," acting CEO Scott Derwin said.

"Basketball Australia has been consistent in every step of this process as to what the requirements are for the Blaze to play in the 2012/13 NBL season - and we've done that to maintain the integrity of the league.

"The BA Board appreciates that the club's owners have put in enormous effort to keep the Blaze alive under difficult circumstances, and we were extremely supportive of the community partnership model they proposed.

"Despite reports to the contrary, BA and the NBL have been in continual contact with the club's players, coach and staff to ensure their welfare.

"Naturally, we all would have preferred to see the Blaze in the NBL, but the reality is the club could only move forward with a viable and sustainable business model."

It is a second blow for Gold Coast sports fans after the A-League team was ejected from the Football Federation Australia competition for the 2013 season.

According to the federation, Gold Coast United lost its license because the level of local public and corporate support for the team fell below the minimum requirements for a professional club.

Topics:  basketball australia, gold coast blaze, national basketball league



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