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Basketball Superstars Receive Graduation Certificates

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The University of Worcester’s close ties with one of the world’s leading national basketball associations and the Lithuanian Sports University received further recognition last week.

Mick Donovan, Head of Sport and Exercise Science at the University, was invited to present the graduation certificates for the MSc European Basketball Coaching Science to two Lithuanian basketball superstars, Marijonas Petravicius and Linas Kleiza – in front of over 15,000 people at a friendly fixture between Lithuania and Russia.

Mr Donovan, a guest of the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, then watched the game with the country’s Prime Minister, and was delighted to further strengthen what is a unique relationship between the University and one of the key nations in European basketball.

He explains: “Despite being a relatively small country, Lithuania punches well above its weight in terms of basketball. It is their national sport and the game is played and followed passionately.

“The national team have enjoyed great success – they have finished third in three different Olympic Games, and won the European Championships in 2003. Lithuania has produced a number of NBA players – including Linas Kleiza – so we are delighted to be able to work so closely with them and the Lithuanian Sports University to develop great coaches of the future.”

Petravicius and Kleiza, who both represented their country at the Beijing Olympics of 2008, passed the unique, two-year MSc European Basketball Coaching course, which is designed to enable players to develop their conceptual and theoretical coaching understanding, with teaching taking place in both Worcester and Lithuania.

The course is aimed at coaches, senior players and students throughout Europe who have an interest in developing the game and players.

Mr Donovan continues: “We are extremely proud to offer this course, in partnership with the Lithuanian Sports University. The fact that it continues to attract such high calibre coaches and elite, international players is testimony to the quality of the course.

“Following the recent opening of the University of Worcester Arena, we look forward to further developing our excellent reputation with basketball experts, players and coaches throughout the world.”

For information on courses at University of Worcester visit www.worcester.ac.uk or for application enquiries telephone 01905 855111 or email admissions@worc.ac.uk