Marin Sedlacek is Camp Director of Basketball without Borders Europe and has held this role since the first camp back in 2001.
Sedlacek is from Serbia and Montenegro began his playing career in the 1970’s as a member of the Red Star Belgrade basketball team. He began his coaching career when he was only 20 years old and has won several national titles along the way. Since 1990, Sedlacek has worked for FIBA as a coaching instructor for Africa and Asia. He has conducted over 50 clinics worldwide and is presently the director of youth development programs with the basketball club Red Star in Belgrade. We caught up with him at Basketball without Borders Europe in Lithuania.
This is your sixth time as Camp Director for Basketball without Borders Europe. Has the camp evolved since the first one back in 2001?
We’ve seen an unbelievable improvement from year to year and I think that even when we started we didn’t have that kind of idea that it would be so good. You can say six years, which is a long time, but bearing in mind that we spend four days at a camp, its less than a month. And for that period we’ve improved a lot, we’ve changed a lot of things according to the new movements of basketball and also a big impact is the very good selection of players as well as the coaches.
Have you seen some good talent here this year in Lithuania?
Yes I have. I think that compared to last year when we were in Treviso [ Italy] we had some well-known names who came directly from the Junior European Championships. This year they are a little younger, but I think there is better potential. Bearing in mind that some of them are only 15, it will be good to think and talk about them for the next 4-5 years time, but some of them definitely have a very big and great future ahead of them.
What does this camp bring to the players that attend?
This is a unique opportunity for them because on an international field you play some tournaments like the European championships where you play one game and you see a player for 40 minutes to 1 hour, if you play against him, and then you forget him. Here they are with each other for four days and they have a chance to challenge each other every day for 4-6 hours. They can learn a different culture and they have a chance not only to see where they are and how good they are but also to see how the others are looking and basketball as a game. Basketball is a global game and is the name of all the languages and all the cultures for the kids who are coming and attending and also playing this game.
Can you briefly explain your role as Camp Director?
My role is firstly to create the programs, what we should do from a basketball point of view; secondly to observe how things go and to make some corrections if necessary and thirdly to keep the discipline between the players and the coaches and to run everything on time.
Marin Sedlacek is certainly keeping busy this summer as he’ll also be Camp Director for Basketball without Borders Americas in Puerto Rico, July 17-20.