Lubomir Kotleba: We watched competitive basketball during the Final Four
Mr. Lubomir Kotleba is the Chairman of the Rule Advisory Group FIBA and most notably a former FIBA Sports director and of course basketball referee. He was one of the special guests for the Final Four in Samokov and was a visitors of the Balkan League Sports Director - Mr. Shay Shtriks. Here is what Kotleba had to say regarding his impressions of his two day stay in Bulgaria:
"I think if I remember correctly it was my third time in a Balkan League Final Four. The games were very close, interesting. Some may say they were not on a high level but I don′t agree. Of course it′s not Barcelona against Zalgiris but the games were really interesting. Unfortunately not everybody understands that in order to win you have to learn how to lose so some situations were not a good image for a Final Four. Otherwise everything was fine and I must take my hat off for the management who already 10 years are organizing this league in a very difficult region where there are many competitions and it′s difficult to find teams. However they still continue and also have good plans for the future.
The organization is always good - the management knows what to do and has experience. The goal for the years to come will be to find teams who are ready to participate with heart and bring the games to a happy end. I understand it will be difficult because there are a lot of different leagues. But as I said, I admire the organizers - each year they are ready to start and finish the job well.
Of course me and Shay Shtriks were discussing about the system of competition and whether the Final Four is the best model. It′s difficult to give any specific advices because I′m not so much inside. However by seeing the Final Four I can say that the teams are not so bad. We were watching very competitive basketball. Each team has foreigners who are bringing a different spirit.
I can say that personally I feel really fine. I′m retired but sometimes I′m going to different places. I know Shay since we were referees and we′ve been friends for a long time and it was pleasure to be here."