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SBD Global/July 10, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Basque Women's Beach Handball Players Resistant To Rule Requiring Bikinis

Starting next year in Spain, "all women's beach handball players will have to follow the European federation's regulations and dress" in bikinis, according to Dani Ortín of LIBERTAD DIGITAL. It is a "situation that has caused protests, above all by the Basque federation, which considers the rule sexist." Until now, women playing this sport "could wear practically any uniform they wanted." But during the last tournament held in the region of Cantabria, "21 of the 22 women's teams were reprimanded for not dressing according to the rules." The players "chose to wear cycling shorts and sleeveless shirts." The Basque federation "warned that it is now deciding whether to continue participating in events organized by the Spanish federation." Spanish Handball Federation President Francisco Blázquez said, "It is a European regulation that has to be observed. It is already in place at the European and int'l level and in Spain we have given a year of notice and warning." Blázquez added that "no one from the Basque federation had been in contact with him." Blázquez: "It is one thing if the leader of beach handball has said this. But if there is a rule to participate and you do not want to follow it, well then you can not participate. .. What happens is that it is taken out of context and they want to attach themes of sexism." Beach handball is now "experiencing a controversy seen on other occasions with beach volleyball, where the women wear bikinis" (LIBERTAD DIGITAL, 7/8).
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