UEPS - AIPS Europe Executive Committee -Meeting, 30. 10. - 1. 11. 2012 Ljubljana
Slovenia will welcome almost a thousand sports journalists for the EuroBasket finals in 2013, but the UEPS Executive Committee have already had a sneak preview during their meeting in Ljubljana.
The 24 nation tournament will be the biggest in Slovenia’s short history. Even the draw promises to be something out of the ordinary. It will be held below ground in the Postojna Cave and covered by special fibre optic technology. With temperatures decidedly on the cool side it should ensure that speeches by dignitaries are kept to a minimum, which after some recent long drawn out affairs will be blessing.
“. With all the people coming to Ljubljana for the competition, this is the biggest event, not just sport that we have ever had in our country’s history.” said Tournament director Ales Kriznar.
“We are a small country, but the size of Slovenia is one of the big advantages for us because everything is so close.” He said.The tournament will reach its conclusion at the state of the art Stozice arena in the capital.
The UEPS gathering reflected continuing concerns over radio rights for football. Committee member Jean Paul Savart had addressed the European Broadcasting Union in Geneva only a week before and highlighted restrictions imposed by clubs in Spain and England. He told the EBU “It was time to take action together.”
The first stages of an agreement with AIPS America had seen UEPS President Yannis Daras travel to Havana in 2012 for a post graduate course for students at the Jose Marti Institute in Havana
“This will exchange between continental sections in order to share a common media awareness which exists in all continents.Our target is to have more European journalists going out to cover the Copa Libertadores and to invite more Americans to cover the Champions League.’he said.
Delegates also reviewed the inaugural AIPS/Europe young reporters workshop held at the pre- Olympic tournament in cooperation with the European Volleyball Federation in Ankara . Ten young journalists took part in this event under the ssupervision of Lev Rossoshik and Pedrag Milinkovic.
Thoughts also turned to the shortlists for the UEPS Sportsman and Sportswoman of the year. At the end of such a tumultuous year, many great Olympic feats are in the reckoning with names such as Tour de France and Olympic champion Bradley Wiggins and boxer Katie Taylor well to the fore, so too the European golfers who engineered that amazing recovery to win the Ryder Cup , along with the usual suspects such as 2011 winner Sebastian Vettel.
The UEPS meeting had been organised by Rok Tamse , fresh from completing the Ljubljana city marathon the preceding weekend. The party was joined by representatives of the Slovenian Sports Journalists Association and received at City Hall where .Mayor Zoran Jankovic, a keen footballer , recalled playing behind the defence as the sweeper in the style of his his hero Franz Beckenbauer. “He learnt it all fnrom me “ he joked.