The instructors team this year again will be happy to have Sasa Pukl – who is one of the top active referees in Europe, with extensive background in officiating, and great track record as a referee’s teacher.
This year will be already 7th time that Sasa is joining us at REFEREE.PL, when I asked him about it he said: “7th time already? What makes me keep coming is mostly hanging with young referees, assisting and helping them. I always like to share my knowledge and experience with younger colleagues. The second is learning. This is one of the best way to learn in a different way. Even as an instructor I least from other lectures, from discussions that we have in Kuba’s camp. I love coming back!!” And we definitely love to have Sasa with us, as you can always count on Sasa’s extensive experience and great sense of humor and strong will to share the knowledge with others.
Sasa Pukl started to referee in the age of 17. He has passed FIBA Clinic in 1995 in Slovenia. Since then he officiated many European and World Championship, Euroleague Finals and Olympics. We are delighted to have Sasa again with us at the camp, specially that there is a newly organization created within Euroleague that is established with Sasa elected as its president. This is very interesting and good news for the Euroleague newcomers or aspiring referees.
How the Euroleague officiating is changing over the seasons that you are in the league and specially recently?
Sasa Pukl: Euroleague officiating is developing in the same or sometimes even faster speed like European basketball is developing. A referee from yesterday is past, it is here and now. Looking at games 10 or 15 years ago you can see a lot of differences. Mechanics was different, criteria, almost everything. And this is only 10-15 years, not to mention 20 or 30 years ago... Number of mistakes per game decreases. You simply have to make less and less mistakes to stay in the top.”
Can you tell a bit what is Association of Euroleague Referees that is just being established now?
Sasa Pukl: Union of Euroleague basketball officials (Uebo) is newly created organization. It is first Union of basketball referees on European level. Our aim is to assist, and help referees on and off the court. In my opinion this is historical move which will have impact soon but will specially be appreciated in few years by younger guys who just started their Euroleague career or even not there yet. Camp in Poland is privileged and has 2 of its leadership: Luigi Lamonica was elected as 1st vice president and I was elected as president of Uebo.
2012 London Olympics
2008 (Madrid) and 2016 (Manila) Olympics qualifying tournament
2006 (Japan) and 2010 (Turkey) World cup
2005 (Serbia-Montenegro) and 2007 (Spain) EuroBasket
2011 (Argentina) and 2013 (Mexico) Americas Championship
2001 (Japan), 2005 (Argentina) and 2009 (New Zealand) Fiba U-19 World Championship
Euroleague referee since 2001
2014 (Moscow) and 2016 (Strasbourg) Eurocup final game
2007 (Athens), 2009 (Berlin), 2014 (Milano) and 2015 (Madrid) Euroleague Final 4. Milano and Madrid also final games