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Second Melbourne team bid dies

Date

Jon Pierik

THE bid for a second Melbourne team in the National Basketball League is over, with the private ownership group unable to meet a 5pm deadline today to produce the financial requirements set out by Basketball Australia.

BA also confirmed to The Age it had rejected a bid to again field a team in Brisbane.

BA chairman Kristina Keneally said the Melbourne-based group had not raised the money for the $500,000 licence fee nor the $1 million bank guarantee.

BA had lost patience with the group in the past week.

“We have made no secret of our plan to establish a team back into the Brisbane marketplace and add a second Melbourne team,” Keneally said.

“We have worked towards that plan for two long years but we can't let impatience overwhelm us as we draw closer to those goals.

“Both bids had great merit and were therefore seriously considered by the NBL Commission for the 2012-13 season.

"Yet even with a number of deadline extensions, neither group is yet to satisfy fully the entry criteria. Further extensions simply aren't possible as we must allow our existing nine teams to move forward with their planning for season 2012-13."

The launch of the proposed Melbourne club, to be based at the new state basketball centre in Wantirna South, had been mooted for months. League headquarters even tentatively booked a city-based venue and dates for an announcement.

The plan was to tap into major basketball associations in Kilsyth, Sandringham and Knox, for players, coaches and access to membership - but not for finances.

However, connections of the group, who did not wish to be publicly named, said they would not seek a licence for next season and would instead plan a bid for the 2013-14 season.

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