Philip Mestdagh stops as Belgian Cats national coach

The Belgian women’s basketball team has to find a new coach, now that Philip Mestdagh stops playing after six years.

“We believe it is time for a new wind,” explains CEO Koen Umans. “Philip has led the Belgian Cats, together with all the staff, to the world level: 89 international matches with a sixth place in the world ranking. The most beautiful pages in the history of Belgian basketball bear his stamp. We would like to expressly thank Philip for his many years of dedication. He belongs to our Hall of Fame for what he has accomplished with the Belgian Cats. The selection as the 2020 Coach of the Year in all sports underscores the appreciation for the individual and the recognition of his impact by the sporting landscape in its broadest form. ‘

With Mestdagh, the Belgian Cats qualified again for a European Championship in 2017 for the first time in ten years. After a bronze medal at the European Championship, Belgian basketball women finished fourth at the World Cup a year later. In 2019 Emma Meesseman and company. fifth in the European Championship. And in 2020 they qualified for the Ostend Olympics for the first time in history. Last summer, the Cats were stranded in the quarterfinals in Tokyo after another bronze medal at the European Championship. After a thriller, they narrowly lost 86-85 to host Japan. Mestdagh’s contract expired after the Games.

There was talk of an extension of the contract, but apparently no agreement was reached. There was also, according to The latest news a hair in the butter between Mestdagh and some players.

It is not yet known who will succeed him. There is not much time left because the preliminaries of the European Championship start in mid-November.

Tears for a missed opportunity

Vince Fernandez

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