The Emergence and Growth of Basketball in Turkey: From Educational Institutions to International Success

Educational institutions have an important share in the emergence of basketball, the second most popular sport in Turkey. While basketball was first played among students in our country in 1904 at the Robert College Sports Hall in Istanbul, its foundations were laid under the roof of Robert College under the leadership of an American physical education teacher. The recognition and spread of this sport took place in the following years with the efforts of Galatasaray High School physical education teacher Ahmet Robenson. The first known basketball match was held in this school in 1911. The Young Christians Union opened a representative office in Turkey in 1920, which had a great impact on the popularization of basketball. The first serious basketball match was played between Turks and Americans in the garden of Cağaloğlu Teachers’ School in 1921.

Basketball’s acceleration in Turkey actually took place after the declaration of the republic. With the beginning of the Republic period, while teams were established one after another, the first basketball league was established and official matches began to be played. Galatasaray, the two teams that would be the locomotive of Turkish basketball, established basketball branches in 1923 and Fenerbahçe in 1925.


After 1923, in addition to Galatasaray, Kurtuluş, Beyoğluspor, Barkhoba, Maccabi, Protkeba and Italian Kartal are recorded as clubs that were seriously active in the field of basketball. The first basketball league in Turkey was established in 1927, and the Istanbul Basketball Championship was organized. In the early years, minority teams were active in Istanbul basketball. Maccabi, founded by Jews in Istanbul, continued its championship in the Istanbul Basketball Championship, which was established in 1927, until 1933. The superiority of the Maccabi basketball team in the basket ends with factors such as the Turkish Sports Institution’s beginning to give importance to basketball and the strengthening of the Galatasaray basketball team.


Turkish basketball, whose development accelerated with the establishment of the federation and the organization of the national league, entered a period of complete revival in the 1970s, with private organizations establishing their teams. The official activities of the Basketball Federation started within the Sports Games Federation established in 1934, and gained a special management with the Turkish Basketball Federation (TBF) established in 1959.

Basketball activities carried out in Istanbul, Izmir and Ankara regions were later brought together and turned into the Turkish Away Basketball League in 1966. In the 1978-1979 season, it was decided that the teams that finished the league in the top five would play double-round play-off matches, and Efes Pilsen became the team that won the championship. With the promotion of four teams from the 2nd League in the 1980-1981 season, the number of teams in the 1st League reached 18. The league was played divided into White, Red and Green groups consisting of six teams. The top two teams in these groups took part in the Final Group, while the other teams formed the Classification Group. Eczacıbaşı finished first in the Final Group, where the teams met three times, and became the champion with 16 wins and 49 points in 17 matches.


Turkey National Men’s Basketball Team had the most successful period in its history, finishing second in Europe in 2001 and second in the World in 2010.

The first international contact in Turkish basketball history took place in 1929. Robert College students and graduates play matches with sailors from the American Battleship Raleigh. The most prominent international contact before the national competitions was the Bar-Kohba team, consisting of Jewish athletes from Istanbul, participating in the 2nd Maccabiat Games in Tel Aviv in 1935 and representing Turkey in the games. After the start of international contacts in basketball, the first national match was in 1936. It was also played against Greece. The first Olympics in which the Basketball National Team participated was the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games. The National Men’s Team was among the top 8 teams in the 1997 European Championship and the 1999 European Championship. The National Team had the most successful period in its history, finishing second in Europe in 2001 and second in the World in 2010.

Among the organizations hosted by Turkey, the 11th European Basketball Championship in 1959 is noteworthy. The tournament, which holds the title of the last European Championship played outdoors at Istanbul Mithatpaşa Stadium, has become a symbolic tournament in this transition of basketball matches, which will now be played completely indoors since the 60s. The first half of the Turkey-Finland match, held on the last day of the tournament, was played at Mithatpaşa Stadium. However, when it started to rain in the second half, the remaining part of the match was completed at the Sports Exhibition Center.


Rule changes, as important innovations in Turkey, were another factor that determined the course of the game. The implementation of the ‘draw’ result, which remained in effect for 35 years, was terminated in the 1981-1982 season. As of this date, there will be no matches ending in a draw, and the period of matches ending with equal scores going to overtime has begun.

In the 1998-1999 season, it was decided to stop the clock after every basket scored in the last two minutes of the half and to increase the number of time-outs of the teams in the second half to three. Following the rule change in the 2000-2001 season, the attack time was reduced from 30 seconds to 24 seconds, and the time to cross the half-court line was reduced from 10 seconds to 8 seconds, and a match was started to be played in four 10-minute periods instead of two 20-minute halves.


International tournaments held at club level also have an important place in the history of basketball in Turkey. 1992 FIBA ​​Europa League was held in Istanbul, hosted by Abdi İpekçi Sports Hall. The 2017 Euroleague Final Four held at Istanbul Sinan Erdem Sports Hall is among the main ones. The organization attracted the attention of European basketball fans to Istanbul for three days.


– Yalcin Granite
He became the first Turkish basketball player to be transferred to Europe, and played for France’s Racing Paris team in 1955.

– Hudai Budanur
He scored all the points for the black and white team on his own in the 110-56 win against Beşiktaş Karagücü.

– Hüseyin Alp
With a height of 2.15 meters, he was among the tallest men of his time. He also became known for his roles in Turkish films.

-Erman Kunter
In the Fenerbahçe-Hilalspor match in 1988, he received the title of the player who scored the most points in a match with 153 points.

-Efe Aydan
He is the first Turkish basketball player to play in the national team with 259 matches and is the first Turkish basketball player to play in the European Team.

-Levent Topsakal
He is the player who scored the most points in a national match with 78 points in the 1983 match between Turkey and Ireland.

– Harun Erdenay
He was one of the top scorers in the history of the league, became the league’s top scorer in three seasons, and won many championships.

– İbrahim Kutluay
He is the first Turkish basketball player to be transferred to a Greek team and win the Euroleague championship.

– Mirsad Turkcan
He was transferred to Houston Rockets in 1998 and made history as the first Turkish basketball player to play in the NBA.

– Mehmet Okur
He made history as the first Turkish player to win an NBA championship with the Detroit Pistons in the 2003-2004 season.

– Hidayet Turkoglu
He is the longest-serving Turkish player in the NBA and the winner of the award for the player with the most improvement in the NBA.

– Kerem Tunçeri
He became immortal with the layup that brought him to the final of the world championship. He is the basketball player who has won the most international caps with 215 times.


– Mirsad Turkcan
– İbrahim Kutluay
– Mehmet Okur
– Hidayet Turkoglu
– Furkan Aldemir
– Omer Asik
– Semih Erden
– Ersan Ilyasova
– Cedi Osman
-Furkan Korkmaz
– Ömer Faruk Yurtseven
– Alperen Şengün

2023-10-28 05:34:00
#History #basketball #started #schools #spread #country #Sports #News


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