Cypriot basketball has taken the downslope.
The problem lies in much depth, however on this article I would like to pay my attention on just wo aspects.
First, the fact that Cypriots are not taking much time in the local league is indeed a problem. This obviously impacts their effort in the national team. How can they compete if they do not have enough games?
But really, whose fault is this? Four years ago Cypriots were about to go on a strike to restrict the unlimited landing of Bosman players. Out of a sudden and for a strange reason this was suspended. So this cannot be an excuse anymore. They had their chance. Now it is too late!
Second, a lot is being said about everybody else's blame, but it is time to give Cypriot players their share of the blame. Taking a look at the statistics in the first six games, I would like to highlight a few important points:
1) Cypriot players have only succeeded in 62 out of 110 attempted free throws (56%). They missed a total of 48 free throws. As a matter of fact, 8 out of 10 National Team players have below 65% behind the free throw line. In my understanding a free throw is defined as an unimpeded shot at the basket from the free-throw line. This is unacceptable!!!
2) Cypriot players have an average of 20 turnovers per game.
3) Cypriot players have only succeeded in 22 out of 98 attempted 3-point shots (22%).
4) Cypriot players have only succeeded in 104 out of 234 attempted 2-point shots (44%).
Based on the above statistics there is no much room for excuses. There is no excuse for missing 48 free throws, or missing 76 three - pointers. Nobody expects the National team to beat Croatia for example. But we expect at least the players to give all they have.
It is not the coach who makes the shots, it is not anyone else. It is the players themselves.
To end, I would like to note that it is about time for the players themselves to leave excuses at the side and take their part of the blame.
Start playing some basketball!!!