Basketball New Zealand has confirmed today that Pero Cameron has been reappointed as the head coach of the Tall Blacks for the upcoming FIBA World Cup and Olympic cycle.
Cameron has been in the interim Head Coach position since 2019 after Paul Henare’s resignation. He now has been contracted to the role fulltime through to 30 September 2024.
Basketball New Zealand Head of High Performance Leonard King says no one knows the Tall Blacks better than Cameron.
“Pero has been an anchor for the Tall Blacks programme for well over two decades. He embodies the Tū Kaha culture and truly understands what it means to represent New Zealand.
“He has made a successful transition from a long, storied, and highly successful playing career to an international coaching career, where he has displayed an incredible aptitude for identifying players’ and coaches’ strengths and placing them in positions where they can be successful,” says King.
The appointment also sees Cameron returning to New Zealand after fourteen years living on the Gold Coast. The Tall Blacks head coach role is now based in New Zealand and Cameron will be closely involved in developing the team and its depth chart as he focuses on building a new team for a new era.
“It’s an honour to be named head coach of the team that means more to me than any other. I have dedicated my adult life to the black jersey, and I am immensely proud to be taking the next step in my Tall Blacks journey.
“It’s also exciting to be coming back home to New Zealand on a more permanent basis. Basketball in New Zealand have been developed significantly over the last five years and the depth of talent has built year on year. I’m absolutely committed to this team and the job I’ve been entrusted with,” says Cameron.
With the 2023 FIBA World Cup and the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris the ultimate goals, Cameron is under no illusions about the task ahead.
“The world is in a challenging space right now, and we will do our best to navigate the path to FIBA World Cup 2023 and the 2024 Olympic Games as best we can.
“I look forward to working with a dedicated staff and a group of world class players as we take the Tall Blacks where we need to go.”
Cameron played for the Tall Blacks a record 227 times from 1993-2010, captaining the team on 170 occasions. He was instrumental in the famous run to the semi-final of the FIBA World Championship in 2002, where he was named to the All-Tournament Team. In 2011 he was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Basketball, and he became the first New Zealander to be inducted into the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2017. After retiring from playing, he served as Tall Blacks assistant coach from 2011-2019. He has served as interim head coach of the Tall Blacks since 2019.
Cameron will be arriving in New Zealand next month.