Spaniard Victor Lapena has been hired as the head coach of Canada’s women’s basketball team.
New @CanBball the senior women’s head coach is Victor Lapena, a former Spanish assistant and currently head coach of Fenerbahce in Turkey, according to sources. Press conference at 11 a.m.
– Michael Grange (@michaelgrange) January 6, 2022
Lapena’s pro team Fenerbahce broke the news on Twitter ahead of the scheduled Canada Basketball announcement on Thursday morning.
The 46-year-old from Zaragoza is a long-time coach of Spain’s national women’s program at the development and senior levels, and was an assistant at the Rio 2016 Olympics.
He has been the head coach of Fenerbahce of the Turkish Super League since 2019.
Her hiring is the culmination of a global search by Canada Basketball to replace Lisa Thomaidis, who has agreed to part ways with the national organization after nine years at the helm of the senior women’s program.
Canada had high hopes for the Beijing Olympics last summer, arriving in China with a fourth place finish. But COVID-19 prevented the team from training together for almost 18 months, and they were eliminated in the preliminary round of the Games.
Canada’s quest for a spot in the FIBA Women’s World Cup begins next month. The World Cup is a direct qualification for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.