Amaya Valdemoro has become this Wednesday in Manila (Philippines) the first Spanish basketball player to enter the FIBA Hall of Fame, and the second Spanish in this select club, after coach María Planas, the only woman who has for the women’s national team. Valdemoro, 47, thus joins former players Emiliano Rodríguez, Fernando Martín and Epi, and former coaches Pedro Ferrándiz and Antonio Díaz-Miguel as the Spanish representation in the Hall of Fame.
The recognition for the Spanish former forward, born in Alcobendas, culminates a legendary career in which he spent in Spain with Godella, Getafe, Ros Casares and Rivas, as well as foreign experiences at Samara and CSKA Moscow. In total, she won eight Spanish Leagues, nine Cups and four Super Cups, in addition to the 1993 Euroleague with Dorna Godella. In addition, he broke a historical barrier by scoring three WNBA rings with the Houston Comets between 1998 and 2000. And with the national team he carved out another trajectory to remember: 258 international matches, only behind Laia Palau’s 314, four World Cups and two Olympic Games played, and six medals: gold in the 2013 European Championship, silver in the 2007 European Championship, and bronzes in the 2003, 2005 and 2009 European Championships and in the 2010 World Cup.
“Until this morning, every time I thought about the Hall of Fame I was excited, and today as the day has gone on I have had tremendous nerves. Especially since every time I rehearsed the speech tears came to my eyes,” Valdemoro explained. “I dedicate this award to four people. One is my coach Miki Vukovic, who was a benchmark for me and the one who believed in me the most. Elisa [Aguilar], with whom I coincided since I was 13 years old and I have spent a lifetime both sporting and of friendship attached to her, and with whom we have lived through very important moments. I love living this moment next to her. I have had to be the first Spanish player in the FIBA Hall of Fame and I hope and wish that she will tear down a very important wall for women as the first president of the FEB. And of course, she also dedicates it to my father and mother, who are no longer with us, and to all my family, who have always supported me. I lost my mother at the age of 18, and my father is the person who has supported me the most and without a doubt has been the MVP of my life.”
On the other hand, the 22nd FIBA Congress appointed in Manila the Qatari sheikh Sheikh Saud Ali Al Thani as president of the world body for the period 2023-2027. Jorge Garbajosa, former president of the Spain Federation and currently president of FIBA Europe, was elected FIBA Vice President and member of the Central Board The Spain Federation was represented by Elisa Aguilar, Director of Competitions of the FEB and next candidate for president.
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