The Estonia men's national basketball team will have joint training sessions in the Nord Cramo Sports Center until the end of the summer. The so-called sports city, unique in Estonia, will house 30-40 players vying for places in the national squad.
At the end of the emergency situation, Nord created a so-called sports city, which includes four basketball courts. Former Estonia U-20 and U-18 basketball national team head coach and current sports director at Nord Indrek Visnapuu told ERR that the campus is new and unique in Estonia.
"It is possible to practice judo, it is possible to play basketball on the outdoor courts, there are indoor options for different sports. We have partnering schools with whom we try to negotiate for using their infrastructure during summer. I think this is unique," Visnapuu told ERR on Sunday.
"I must thank the Estonian Basketball Association for giving us this chance and that we have the budget to do this additional work this summer. I think it is a great investment. Starting this program; a new era for the national team, is very important to us. This will be a lengthy period. There are players who will be with us for the whole summer and others who will spend less with us because they have to return to their jobs," head coach of the national team Jukka Toijala told ERR.
"First we have to help players return into good shape. Some of them have sat at home for a couple of months. We have 30-40 players in the camp, we are testing some younger players, as well. I think it is very important to create this Estonian basketball family and to help each other like this," Toijala added.
The 48-year-old Finn has coached the Estonian team in two games thus far. What will be the playstyle under his helm? "Hopefully we'll play a winning game, that is our goal. If I look at our young, talented players, I see it as a fast-pace game with a lot of spacing on the offence and ball moving from side to side. That is the style I'm hoping for."
Full interview with Jukka Toijala (introduction in Estonian, interview in English):
Editor: Anders Nõmm