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Conversing with Nikos Kambanis

| 5 Marzo 2015 | 0 Comments

CMAS (Confédération Mondiale des Activités Subaquatiques) is the international entity which supervise all sports activities related to underwater and fin swimming.
Promotion and development of various sports, rules formulation and revision, international (Continental and World) competition organization are the main tasks of Confederation.
Like each National Federation, as FIPSAS for Italy, even inside CMAS responsibility of single sport are assigned to specific working group, called Commissions.

Taking advantage of good relationship established during these years, we would ask Nikos Kambanis, Head coach of Greek National team and member of Spearfishing Commission, some questions about tasks and organization of Commision and also about some other topics that concern European and World competition as, for example, partecipation of French athlets to international competition or organizational problems occurred during the last World Cahmpioship in Perù.

Here his answers.

How the Commission works and Which are the its main tasks?

All CMAS sports commissions come under the authority of the Sports Committee.
The role of these Commissions is exclusively technical, any decisions they take only concern technical aspects of their discipline(s).
We practically make suggestions about the rules of spearfishing, the international judges, the venue of the championships, the judjes’ courses.
All commission initiatives, including those relating to championship and competition regulations, require the approval of the CMAS Board of Directors, condition sine qua non to make them executory.

From the left, Xavier Duran Soler, CMAS Vicepresident, Anna Arzhanova, CMAS President, and Julio Antonio Cruz, Spearfishing Commission Presidente (photo S. Rubera)

From the left, Xavier Duran Soler, CMAS Vicepresident, Anna Arzhanova, CMAS President, and Julio Antonio Cruz, Spearfishing Commission Presidente (photo S. Rubera)

Each Commission is managed by a Board composed of one President, Antonio Cruz in this case, one Secretary, Sergio Perez, and some members.
Each commission must establish the number of its members at least four months before the elections and this number cannot be increased for whatever reason.
Candidacies to the positions of Secretary and members of each commission must be sent to C.MA.S. within deadlines established by statutes and on the ad hoc form signed by the President of the federation or affiliated organisation having voting right for such commission.

After his election, the President of the Commission will propose to the Board of Directors and on the basis of received candidacies, the list of members of his commission without exceeding the number of members.
The Board of Directors will decide about the proposed list, being able to change it, and then the list of members of each commission will be final.

A Commission’s own Internal Regulations, if they exist, may not be in conflict with the CMAS articles of association or the Internal Regulations.
Once a year all Sports Commissions Chairmen will be summoned to a joint meeting in the CMAS offices with the President of the Sports Committee.

Kambanis is also a first-class spearfisher (photo Facebook)

Kambanis is also a first-class spearfisher (photo Facebook)

Each commission can deliberate validly if 50% at least of its members are present with minimum three members.
Each commission will meet once a year at CMAS HQ or other venue selected by CMAS
Summoning and agendas will be sent to members of the Bureau of the Commission after approval of CMAS Board of Directors by the commission’s Secretary.
Minutes of the meetings of commissions will be sent to CMAS HQ starting from the day
after the closing of such meetings

What operative contribution National Federations give to Commission? Is there a real cooperation?

Very few Federations address our Commission. Mainly the National Federations of the 7 members present their views through their representatives in the Commission.

Which are main problems that Commission faces performing the tasks?

Main problem is to have actual meetings with adequate time, because during competitions the time schedule is always tight and outside competitions the expenses of trips are not covered by National Federations any more. So we discuss vie e-mail, but this is not the best way to discuss…

What is the Commission’s opinion about competitions out of CMAS official calendar, such as Spearfishing Champions League?

The Commission cannot really comment on competitions that do not comply with cmas specifications.
The organizers of SCL are private persons (not the Greek National Federation) and want to keep a special character to their competition. They cannot ask the participants to issue CMAS sports licenses and thus have stayed outside the CMAS umbrella so far.

Kambanis, first from the left, with Greek National Team at 2012 World Championship in Vigo (photo  S. Rubera)

Kambanis, first from the left, with Greek National Team at 2012 World Championship in Vigo (photo S. Rubera)

Another problem to enter the CMAS calendar is the late scheduling of the event every year. They do not know the time and place, until 4-5 months before. So the Commission cannot have an official opinion about the event, but knows that it would be good for both the CMAS and the SCL if they could find a way to reconcile their requirements. The CMAS would have another brilliant competition to present in its calendar and the CL would benefit from the CMAS status as many contemporary athletes would be added to the grate names of the past who compete in that event.
It would be good for all.

The new CMAS president is very keen in expanding our activities, but there are also formal issues that are of importance. To have official competitions taking place where the athletes do not possess a federative license is too much to ask from any World Confederation.

Kambanis keep on take part at some international spearfishing competition (photo V. Prokic)

Kambanis keep on take part at some international spearfishing competition (photo V. Prokic)

The European international spearfishing competitions are severely reduced in number: Master in Palma, Rovigno’s Cup and last year Lussino’s ones. From your point of view which are the causes of this crisis? There should be the opportunity for an individual or Nation competition involving at least 4 or 5 countries?

Well, it is clear that there is no money left to the Federations to send their teams to more than one event every calendar year. Since the golden times of the European Cup in the 80s and 90s a lot has changed. Amateur sport is no longer subsidized by the states and this is evident. Our sport is not professional and its main equipment industries have not seen it as profitable to invest in the competition sponsoring. The decline of the participation was inevitable. The Commission has decided to try to revive the Cup again. But unless the participation fee is kept very-very low, I am not optimistic that we will have many countries and athletes participating. I think at least 4 countries should turn up for a competition to be able to be called official…

France is out of CMAS spearfishing competition since 2008 because National Federation FFESSM banned spearfishing agonistic. But there is many very good French spearfisher who worth competing with other countries athletes. What role Commission can play about this case?

The spearfishing commission in its meeting in Palma de Majorca agreed that it is very important for the future of the discipline that FNPSA (Federation Française de Pêche Sous Marine en Apnea) as representative of France, the founder of Spear Fishing and the CMAS in the world, is accepted by the Cmas BoD at the Cmas Spearfishing Commission as a member without vote in sportif committee with active participation in competition activities, once recognized by French government. We communicated this decision to the BoD of the CMAS.

During last Spearfishing Champions League, Kambanis e his teammate got third position, winning second competition day (photo V. Prokic)

During last Spearfishing Champions League, Kambanis e his teammate got third position, winning second competition day (photo V. Prokic)

Last World Championship organization in Perù revealed many omissions. Which parameters are used to identify and select the location where Intercontinental (Euroafrican, Panamerica, Pacific) and World Championship will occur?

One parameter is the continent. Like in football, we need to have WC outside Europe from time to time. In 2010 and 2012 the WC were held in Europe. Peru was the only candidacy for 2014 from any country outside Europe and they had organized 2 WC in the past. In Palma I expressed the opinion that it was not correct to have 8 slow boats in the world championship. The commission had the information that all the boats in Peru would be wooden (Palma – last year). The change of this decision was communicated to the delegations only during the captains’ meeting and that was an unacceptable change of course in a world championship.

The commission should try to require to any federation organizing that such a disproportion among some of the countries towards others should not happen again.

The parameters are a lot (although not officially listed), but their actual presence is not checked at the place of the championship by Commission members. After the problems we encountered in Peru, we decided that a commission member should go on site one year in advance to control the ability of the organizers to deliver…

But there are years, where there is no interest at all for the organization of an international spearfishing championship (it happened in 2011) or only one country is interested. In those cases, the parameters are irrelevant…

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Category: English

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