Officers from Global VX recently flew to Bilbao to help establish the latest National Governing Body to join the VX family.
This initiative was the result of an enquiry by a Basque teacher, Egoitz Campo Gonzalez who found the sport on the Internet and wanted to introduce the Yorkshire-born sport of VX to his home region.
Egoitz laid the foundations for the trip by finding a number of people to be VX teams for a tournament. Craig Buttery, the Global VX Commissioner, and his two colleagues arrived on the Friday for meetings with Egoitz and then on the Saturday they went to a local public Pelota court to meet the people who were coming to play. As one of the roots of VX is Basque Pelota this was a big moment for the guys from Global VX.
As people began to arrive and pick up the sticks, local children watched with interest, then, as people started to play, the children drifted into the court and wanted to join in.
One of the beauties of VX is that beginners can play at a fast pace within a short space of time – many schools use it to encourage participation amongst non-sporty children by getting them together, then running a tournament after 20 minutes coaching. The same approach was taken with the beginners in Bilbao. The players had a short introduction and were then put into teams for some practice matches followed by a tournament.
Craig said: “This is wonderful – there are males and females, sporty adults to young children. This is the power and the beauty of VX. We work with some fantastic people across the world and Egoitz has joined that number. We have seen some very promising players here this afternoon.”
Egoitz himself, was delighted with the response: “They told me that if people just saw it they would come in and want to play. I didn’t believe them but that is exactly what happened! I didn’t realise there would be such an amazing impact. We have a lot of plans – we will meet and play regularly. We want to set up an association and clubs. We plan to come to England to learn more and we would like to get to the point where we can host an international tournament – we have big plans for VX in the Basque Country!”