Icke is charged with the role of managing the national level athletes and coaches into one of its most important periods, with the London Olympic and Paralympic Games quickly approaching, and great opportunities lying ahead for the Australian Boomers and Jayco Australian Opals basketball teams as well as the all-conquering Men’s wheelchair team, the Rollers, and the Women’s Gliders team.
Basketball Australia CEO Larry Sengstock said that the appointment of Icke, considering his experience in the Australian sporting landscape in the areas of operations but also as an elite athlete himself, is an exciting development and the timing couldn’t be more pertinent.
“We’re very excited to welcome Steven Icke to the basketball family,” Sengstock said. “He comes to the role with a great deal of experience and success in this area having served as the head of football for the Carlton Football Club after performing a similar role with the Fremantle Dockers in the biggest and most highly scrutinised domestic competition in Australia.
“In that time, he was able to exhibit an exceptional understanding and delivery of the specialised needs of elite athletes and coaches to optimise performance in the competition arena,” he said.
“For this reason, we feel confident that he can continue to build upon the great work started by Wayne Carroll, who previously held this position, and help our national teams, athletes and coaching staff achieve their best in international competition, particularly the fast-approaching 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games.”
The announcement also continues a growing trend of not only experienced sports administrators, but also other high-profile Australians moving their careers across to basketball, a sport on the move and growing exponentially. Most notably was the recent announcement that former NSW Labor Premier, Kristina Keneally, would take the role of Chair of Basketball Australia.
“It’s an exciting time for our game. We solidified our world number 3 FIBA ranking out of 214 nations, our domestic competitions are as healthy and competitive as they have been for a number of years, and we’re excited about the potential successes that 2012 can bring to our national programs. And we look forward to the many skills that Steven Icke can bring to this in particular to ensure this success continues on the international hardwood,” he said.
Steven Icke will officially commence the role of General Manager of High Performance on 30 January, 2012.