Basketball Australia has summoned up a panel to assess the application by a transgender athlete to play in Victoria’s NBL1 South women’s competition.
The player has applied to play for Kilsyth and while the decision would normally be left to Basketball Victoria, the national body has stepped in.
It has convened a team of experts to rule on what it described as a ‘complex and challenging issue’.
The panel includes Basketball Australia chief medical officer and Commonwealth Games medical advisor Dr. Peter Harcourt, three-time Olympian and Basketball Australia board member Suzy Batkovic and Diana Robinson, associate professor of sports and exercise physician at Notre Dame University.
‘While Basketball Victoria determines the eligibility of athletes who play in their competitions, in the interest of the sport and all athletes, BA’s panel will now assess this application,’ a BA spokesperson said in a statement.
Andrew Bogut has renewed his criticism of the NBL1 for considering allowing a female transgender to compete in the league
Bogut shared the screenshot of a message from a female AFL player warning allowing biological males to play the sport would alter the playing field
‘We understand this is a complex and challenging issue and it is our intent to expedite the decision and provide clarity to all athletes involved.
‘Given the nature of this case, we ask for respectful commentary.’
Former NBA star Andrew Bogut has vehemently criticised the prospect of the semi-professional women’s league NBL1 South, which incorporates teams from Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, will reportedly allow a ‘biological male’ to play.
On Saturday, the 38-year-old shared a screenshot of a message from a woman AFL player warning allowing trans athletes to compete in women’s leagues would alter the playing field.
The player claimed she ruptured her ACL this season and was left concussed after being tackled by a trans player built like a ‘brick s***house’.
In a thinly-veiled dig at those who have suggested allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports would not have any material impact, Bogut wrote: ‘Whats the big deal? Why do you care? It won’t affect the play! This is ONE of MANY messages I have received from Female Athletes nationwide.’
The 2015 NBA champion added he would ‘love to hear’ Andrew Gaze’s thoughts on the issue, after the Australian basketball legend supported the inclusion of female transgenders in the sport.
‘This confronted me personally,’ the the NBL’s greatest-ever player explained on his show The Run Home with Andy Maher on SEN Radio.
‘My daughter plays Australian Rules football, and there is a female that was born biologically a male that’s playing.
‘When I went there for the warm-ups and I look down the other end and think ‘wow that’s a big girl’… and [wonder] what sort of impact she’ll have.
‘Well, I saw that individual play three times, absolutely it was not even an issue. Yep [she was] very good, but not more dangerous, not more physical.
‘With the sport of basketball and the nature of the rules, to use the argument [that Bogut made] that someone who has transitioned is going to be more dangerous than a female, I don’t get that argument.’
Gaze’s comments came after Bogut had warned the NBL1 would threaten the ‘sanctity of female sport’ if it allowed a biological male to compete.
Australian basketball legend Andrew Gaze believes Bogut is wrong in his assessment
Bogut earlier this week claimed the ‘sanctity of female sport’ was being threatened
‘Word is NBL1 South Women will have a biological Male playing this upcoming season. Are you ok with sacrificing the sanctity of Female Sport in the name of ‘inclusion’?,’ he tweeted earlier this week.
‘#GirlDads where are you? The hashtag is trendy until action is needed.’
It quickly ignited a storm of controversy, with top female basketballers like Chloe Bibby, Saraid Taylor, Anneli Maley and Marena Whittle incensed at Bogut speaking for them when they support having a female transgender player compete in the league.
Opals great Michelle Timms threw her support behind the players, saying she’d have ‘no problem at all with it’ before the NBL’s greatest-ever player, Andrew Gaze, broke down exactly why he believes Bogut couldn’t be more wrong.