East Germany national basketball team

The national basketball team of the GDR represented the German Democratic Republic in the years 1952-1973 in basketball.

The greatest success of the men's team in 1963 reaching the sixth place in the European Basketball Championships.

The ladies selection can boast a bronze medal at the European Championships in 1966. Furthermore, she reached the fourth place at the World Cup in 1967 and the European Championships in 1968.


Men's team

After the Second World War, there was at first only a West German team. At the European Championships 1953, an all-German team with four players eastern part and was ranked 14th to EM 1959 in Istanbul also managed a team from the German Democratic Republic. The team was able to reach 14th place.

For the first German - German duel occurred in 1960 by qualifying for the Summer Olympics in the same year. As the next games it was the GDR decide for themselves. Only in 1973 succeeded the West menu of a victory over East Germany.

1961 demonstrated the GDR at the European Championships in Belgrade No. 12 and was four places better than the team of West Germany.

The greatest success of the national basketball team has been achieved at the European Championships in 1963 in Wrocław / Breslau. After four wins and three defeats in the preliminary competition, the team placed behind the Soviet Union and Poland at # 3 of group B. Since only the first two places progressed, the GDR had to compete in the small semi-finals. There she won clearly with 81:35 against Belgium and played in the match for 5th place against Bulgaria. There they lost though 62:77, yet they were among the surprises of the tournament.

At the next European Championship in 1965, the GDR was unable to repeat the success that ended up with 10th place but again four spaces in front of West Germany. At the last European Championships in 1967, the East German team reached the 14th. There was no participation in World Championships or Olympic Games, also because basketball had been demoted to barely funded Sport II from 1969 without international competitions (see also the end ).

Women's Team

In the first part in a European Championship in 1952, the GDR selection was defeated in all three games high (eg 4-133 against the USSR), finishing in 12th and last place.

At the next European Championships in 1958, it reached also won for the ninth and penultimate place. The subsequent European Championships in 1964 is successful for the team and it took, just like the men's team the year before, the sixth rank.

At the European Championships in 1966 in Romania, the team celebrated their biggest success. The DDR team can only be stopped by the eventual champion from the Soviet Union in the semifinals. The 3rd place match decided the GDR team with 65:60 against Romania for themselves and thus won the bronze medal.

A year later, the GDR team was one of the positive surprises taking place in Prague 5th World Championship. In the only World Cup appearance of the GDR, the team finished 4th. Also in 1968, the team can almost repeat the success of 1966 at the European Championships in Messina and ends up at the end as at the World Championships in 1967, the unfortunate 4th place.

The last European Championship with the participation of East German women found in 1972 in Varna instead. The team was ranked 7th There was no participation in the Olympic Games.

The end

In 1969, the SED especially on medals and points intensive sports decided on the proposal of DTSB that they wanted to focus on the promotion of sports to a certain number of sports. Since basketball is a team sport complex, for which there is only one medal chance in contrast to individual sports, it was downgraded. For a travel ban was accompanied in non-socialist countries and sensitive constraints in the promotion of talent, training and equipment.

This meant the end of the national basketball team of the GDR, which finally disappeared in 1973 by the international stage.