BA blocks trans athlete from women's basketball comp

April 18, 2023 01:01 PM AEST | By AAPNEWS
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Transgender athlete Lexi Rodgers has vowed to keep her dream of playing elite women's basketball alive despite Basketball Australia blocking her path this season.

An expert panel convened by BA has determined Rodgers is ineligible to play elite level women's basketball, including for the Kilsyth Cobras in the NBL1 South competition this year.

The expert panel was led by Dr Peter Harcourt (BA Chief Medical Officer, Commonwealth Games Medical Advisor), Olympic silver medallist Suzy Batkovic and Associate Professor Diana Robinson.

BA assesses eligibility of prospective elite level transgender athletes on a 'case-by-case' basis, accounting for and balancing a range of factors, and has implemented this process on behalf of Basketball Victoria in this matter.

"As the governing body, we acknowledge we're still on a path of education and understanding," BA said in a statement.

"To aid us in developing our framework, Lexi will provide feedback and advice from her experiences.

"The balance of inclusivity, fairness and the competitive nature of sport will always be a complex area to navigate, and we thank those involved who have maintained integrity and respect throughout the process."

Rodgers took to Instagram to express her disappointment in the decision.

"Consistent with the views expressed by so many, I firmly believe I have a place as an athlete in women's basketball," Rodgers wrote.

"I hope Basketball Australia understands that this is not the end of my journey as an athlete and that it must not miss future opportunities to demonstrate its values.

"I am sad about the potential message this decision sends to trans and gender diverse people everywhere.

"I hope that one day basketball's governing body can replicate the inclusion and acceptance I have found on the court with my teammates.

"I hope to one day be playing elite women's basketball in the future and will continue to work on making the sport I love a place for all."

Batkovic, who is a BA director, said the topic is a "complex space that continues to evolve".

"As we continue to develop our own framework for sub-elite and elite competitions, we understand the need to have a clear process and continual education within all layers of the sport so we can best support players, coaches, clubs, associations and the wider basketball community," Batkovic said in a statement.


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