One-third of Olympics referees from Euroleague Basketball

Mar 08, 2016 by Print
One-third of Olympics referees from Euroleague Basketball

Euroleague Basketball is proud to congratulate 10 of its referees who have been chosen by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) to officiate this summer at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The nominations reward the work they and their colleagues have done the last 15 years that has helped make the Turkish Airlines Euroleague and the Eurocup standard-bearers in the field of officiating.

"The fact that Euroleague Basketball referees number one-third of the 30 chosen by FIBA to oversee the most important event in international basketball is a credit to them and the collective of officials in our organization," Richard Stokes, Euroleague Basketball's Director of Refereeing, said. "It also confirms that the work Euroleague Basketball has done over the years to constantly improve and renew the ranks of referees is good for the sport of basketball as a whole."

Half of the Euroleague Basketball referees selected boast previous Olympics experience at the 2012 London Olympics, while two of them – Ilija Belosevic and Christos Christodoulou - have worked the Games twice each. Also, seven of the 10 officials have experience refereeing at Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four.

The group of Euroleague Basketball referees for the Rio Olympics consists of 10 game officials from as many countries. In addition to Belosevic from Serbia and Christodoulou from Greece, the full list is made up by Juan Carlos García Gonzalez of Spain, Damir Javor of Slovenia, Piotr Pastusiak from Poland, Sreten Radovic of Croatia, Eddie Viator of France, Olegs Latisevs of Latvia, Robert Lottermoser of Germany and Borys Ryzhyk of Ukraine.

Belosevic, who oversaw games in eight Euroleague Final Fours over the years, has also worked at Beijing Olympics in 2008, while Christodoulou, veteran of four Final Fours, officiated the Athens Olympics in 2004. Three other referees who worked in London are Lottermoser and Ryzhyk, who have also officiated at five Final Fours, and Latisevs, who has experience at four of the Euroleague's signature events. Viator was at two and Radovic in one Final Four, while Pastusiak, Javor and Garcia Gonzalez are the only three from the group without past Final Four experience.

Also, all but two referees – Pastusiak and Javor – also worked at the 2014 FIBA World Cup. The 2016 Olympic Games take place from August 5 to August 21.

Another 13 Euroleague Basketball referees make up more than half of those nominated to work the three early-summer FIBA qualifying tournaments for the Olympics. They are: in the Phillipines, Elias Koromilas of Greece, Luigi Lamonica of Italy, Miguel Perez Perez of Spain and Sasa Pukl of Slovenia; in Serbia, Joseph Bissang of France, Daniel Hierrezuelo of Spain, Carmelo Paternico of Italy and Fernando Rocha of Portugal; and in Italy, Matej Boltauzer of Slovenia, Milivoje Jovcic of Serbia, Jurgis Laurinavicius of Lithuania, Emilio Perez Pizarro of Spain and Borys Shulga of Ukraine.