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Euroleague Basketball bounces into London with support from Mayor Of London

Turkish Airlines Euroleague, Europe’s elite basketball competition, today announced details of the Trafalgar Square Fan Zone and ‘One Team’ initiative; a grassroots and community-led programme that will leave a lasting basketball legacy in the UK beyond the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four. The announcement was backed by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, during today’s event at City Hall.

Euroleague Basketball

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four is the signature event of the European club basketball competition, where the four best Euroleague teams of the season compete to become Euroleague champions. For the first time in history, the event will take place on UK soil, entertaining 16,000 fans per game across two days at The O2 from May 10 and 12, 2013.

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Fan Zone is a free fan festival in London’s iconic Trafalgar Square that takes place throughout the three days of Final Four competition and will include a basketball court in the middle of the square! The fun, family-friendly environment will entertain daily an estimated 50,000 basketball and non-basketball fans alike with a variety of interactive activities.

Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, said: “London is proud to be hosting the prestigious Euroleague finals, another testimony to this city's status as a top flight venue for elite fixtures. I am also pleased to welcome the free Fan Zone to Trafalgar Square giving everyone the chance to have a go at this great sport.

Last year's Olympic and Paralympics Games has already given basketball a bounce in popularity from professional to grassroots level. This summer, the London Lions are due to move into the magnificent Copper Box venue on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and we are also seeing huge interest through the London School of Basketball, part of my programme to get more people involved in sport.”

Turkish Airlines Euroleague Fan Zone activity will include:

Turkish Airlines Central Court – for the first time in London’s history, a 15m high weather proof basketball court will feature in the centre of the square with 3-on-3 competitions, slam dunk contests, player/legend appearances, the Nike International Junior Tournament and 3-point shoot-outs. The public will have an opportunity to get on court to take part in competitions to win fantastic prizes.

VTB Arena Satellite Courts two satellite courts positioned either end of the square with master classes by basketball pros giving the public a chance to brush-up on free-throws, shooting, passing, dribbling and even dunks!

EFES Cheerleaders - The best cheerleaders in Europe will perform on several occasions and teach dance lessons to anyone who is feeling the groove.

INTERSPORT Trophy Tour & Official Merchandise - as part of the Intersport Trophy Tour, Intersport will be taking the Euroleague Champion’s Trophy to Trafalgar Square, providing fans with the unique opportunity of getting right up-close with the coveted piece of silverware. Intersport will also be offering the official event merchandise to all basketball fans.

In addition, the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four will include music, a children’s art centre, dance performances, food and beverage and various photo opportunities.

‘One Team’, the successful grassroots and community led CSR programme, will aim to involve local communities in life skill sessions built and developed around participation in sport. 15 Euroleague teams are participating in the ‘One Team’ programme (including Real Madrid, Olympiacos, CSKA Moscow), delivering weekly sessions to local community groups covering various topics such as disability, substance abuse, gender inequality and community cohesion.

The impact of the ‘One Team’ programme in the last year has been huge, with a forecast of 10,000 people that have been positively influenced in three years. The programme aims to leave a lasting basketball legacy in the UK as Euroleague continues to work towards a UK franchise that competes in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague competition across Europe.

Pops Mensah-Bonsu, Great Britain Basketball Team & Cajasol Sevilla (Spanish League) player, said: “The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four is the biggest basketball event outside of the NBA Finals and the commitment by Euroleague confirms London as an up-and-coming city in basketball terms – I have no doubt the local support will be huge, much like when I played in the Paris Final Four event. I look forward to heading down to the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Fan Zone in Trafalgar Square to shoot-some-hoops with the kids and share the love we all have for this sport.”

Jordi Bertomeu, CEO and President, Euroleague Basketball, said: “Euroleague Basketball has a long-term vision in the UK beyond this year’s Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four and initiatives like our ‘One Team’ programme demonstrate the positive impact sport can have on local communities and grassroot development.

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four and Fan Zone will be a great showcase of our sport to the UK public and we look forward to welcoming people to The O2 for some high-quality basketball action and also to Trafalgar Square where people can get involved and be inspired to get involved in sport.”

Notes to Editors

TO BUY TICKETS - www.f4tickets.com

MAYOR of LONDON

Basketball is thriving in London thanks to the Olympic and Paralympic Games. London’s only professional basketball team, the London Lions, is set to move into one of the capital's fantastic former Olympic venues, the 7,500 seat Copper Box in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.  The London Lions will be the first professional sports team to move to Queen Elizabeth Olympic

Park and their first game will be in August. A key part of the London Lions move to the Copper Box will be continuing this work with local people. The Copper Box will be open from 27 July 2013 and will be operated by GLL on behalf of owners the London Legacy Development Corporation with a full programme of events and activities for the public to take part in and enjoy.

The Mayor of London and London & Partners have worked alongside AEG to secure the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four event for The O2. For the first time in its history the Final Four has been awarded to a host city for 2 consecutive years (2013 & 2014). The Mayor has also given Euroleague Basketball the use of Trafalgar Square for the Free Fan Zone festival and his Team London Ambassadors will also be supporting the event.

Basketball is one of the fastest growing sports in London and is a priority sport for the Mayor’s Sports Legacy Programme. Over the past two years the Mayor has worked in partnership with Nike to deliver the London School of Basketball programme. It has been hugely successful, giving over 5000 Londoners the chance to play regular basketball, join teams and compete in leagues. The London School of Basketball has also been adopted as the official community programme of the London Lions and will be expanding across London in the years to come.

ABOUT EUROLEAGUE 

  • A global leader in sports management, Euroleague Basketball is enjoying its second decade of sustained growth as an innovative organiser of elite competitions and events. It now manages the continent's two premier basketball competitions, the Turkish Airlines Euroleague and the Eurocup, consisting of more than 50 teams from as many as 25 countries.
  • Euroleague Basketball also directs the Nike International Junior Tournament, which crowns a young men's continental champion each spring.
  • Through the Euroleague Basketball Institute and ”One Team” CSR programme, the company promotes educational and charitable initiatives as varied as coaching clinics and benefit concerts that draw guests from around the world.

ABOUT FINAL FOUR

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four is the signature event of the premier European clubs basketball competition where the four best teams of the season compete to become

Euroleague champions. The 2013 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four will take place at “The O2” from May 10 and 12, 2013.

This is the first time in history that the top European competition will celebrate its Final phase in UK soil.

London joins the club of top European capitals where the Final Four has been held: Barcelona, Tel Aviv, Moscow, Prague, Athens, Madrid, Berlin, Paris and Istanbul.

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four is not only four games but a large number of parallel events that will be developed starting from May 9th until May 12th.

ABOUT FAN ZONE 

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague Fan Zone is a free, outdoor, fan festival that accompanies the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four, the final stage of the premier clubs basketball competition in Europe. The Fan Zone will take over Trafalgar Square for three days, from May 10th to 12th. This season, the Fan Zone lands at Trafalgar Square, one of the most iconic spots of the city of London.

Admiral Horatio Nelson will witness how Londoners meet basketball through an impressive weather-proof central court (with a 15m. high roof) that will feature a number of different activities, surrounded by many other entertainment interactive activities.

The Fan Zone has been designed to offer a fun and family-friendly environment for those basketball fans and non-basketball fans to experience the Euroleague at its most through basketball 3-on-3s, shooting contests, skills lessons, music and dance shows, player appearances, photo opportunity with the Champions’ Trophy, and much more!

ACTIVITY DETAIL:

TURKISH AIRLINES CENTRAL COURT (weather-proof, 15m. high roof):

  • Turkish Airlines 3-on-3: Fans will be able to compete to be the 2013 Fan Champions.
  • EFES Cheerleaders: The best cheerleaders in Europe will perform on several occasions and teaching dance lessons from the opening on Friday to the closure on Sunday.
  • Turkish Airlines Slam Dunk Contests: Final stages of the Turkish Airlines Slam Dunk Contest
  • Nike International Junior Tournament 3-point shooting and Dunk contest: A selection of top young athletes from the participating teams of the Nike International Junior Tournament, including Team England, will join the fans in the Three-Point and Slam Dunk contest.
  • Turkish Airlines Skills demonstration: Professional coaches will organise a thrills and drills session to teach basketball fans the true fundamentals of the game.
  • One Team Community Program & BBL: Euroleague Basketball and the BBL will join forces to promote the power of basketball as a tool to integrate communities within the UK
  • Special Olympics vs UEFA/Euroleague Legends: Special Olympics athletes and legends from UEFA and Euroleague Basketball will team up for an exhibition game to raise the awareness of Special Olympics and fight for the inclusion of people with disabilities

VTB ARENA SATELLITE COURTS:

  • VTB Three-Point Contest: fans will have the opportunity to compete for becoming London’s King of Threes
  • Turkish Airlines Slam Dunk Contests, to bring excitement and awesomeness to London’s heart. Players will demonstrate their high-flying skills at the Turkish Airlines Main Court.

VTB ARENA JUST HOOPS AREA:

  • A space where 10 hoops are setup to either play freely or be taught by some of our coaches on basketball fundamentals (shooting, passing, dribbling…)

INTERSPORT TROPHY TOUR & OFFICIAL MERCHANDISE:

As part of the Intersport Trophy Tour, Intersport will be taking the Euroleague Champion’s Trophy to Trafalgar Square, providing fans with the unique opportunity of getting right up close to it and taking a picture with it. Intersport will also be offering the official merchandise of the event to all basketball fans.

Food and drink will be available in the square all day long.

*Other activities to be confirmed soon

ABOUT ONE TEAM

Develop activities regarding Euroleague Basketball CSR unique league program “One Team”, which aims to integrate the communities we operate on through the life skills that our sport can teach.

This is also part of a longer term strategy to increase basketball presence in the UK market. Based on our information there is a huge basketball fan base in the UK, the number of people who practice basketball is similar to other sports with higher presence in the UK, like rugby or cricket, therefore the interest exists and we would like to develop it.

ABOUT TICKETING

At a later stage, each one of the four qualified teams will be allotted approximately 1,000 tickets to be distributed by them amongst their fans.

Ticket sales will be divided into two rounds, the first one starting on Friday, November 30 at 09:00, and the second will begin as soon as all four qualified teams are known. Tickets will be sold by category, and fans will be grouped at a later stage according to their team preferences, to ensure the safety and fun of the event.

Each ticket will be sold as a four-game package: two semifinals on Friday, May 10, plus third-place and title game on Sunday, May 12. Tickets for the signature event of the season will range from 160€ to 595€.

The number of available tickets in the lowest-price category has been almost doubled compared to the recent editions of the event, making it accessible and affordable for more basketball fans.

You can find all purchasing information at www.f4tickets.com

Contact

For further information: Stewart Day - sd@generatesponsorship.com – 0784 1823 818