The local basketball fraternity will be represented by Bernard Vassallo in the forthcoming SportMalta Awards: L-Ghazliet Sportivi Nazzjonali 2019 edition to be held in the coming weekend.
Vassallo is a finalist for the Official of the Year Award category during the Ghazliet Sportivi Nazzjonali awards event which happens to be the 60th edition as well as commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Malta Sports Journalists Association (Ghaqda Gurnalisti Sport previously Ghaqda Kittieba Sports).
This is the 11th time in history that Vassallo has been selected to be among the finalists of the Official of the Year awards.
He has already tasted success as he is a past winner of the same award when he was voted the ‘Sport Official of the Year’ for 2006.
Along 2019, Bernard Vassallo was very active in the European field refereeing a total of 31 international games between January and December, including a full men international Eurobasket qualifier,13 FIBA European Club competition games including a FIBA Euro Cup quarterfinal tie in March apart from also officiating in the European Under 18 Men Championships as well as the Under 16 Men European B Championships. He was also one of the referees during the 2019 Games of the Small States in Montenegro.
In the local sphere, whilst soon approaching the 1,000 mark in the number of men first division games refereed since his debut in 1993, Vassallo once again refereed many top local matches in 2019 and is now the referee with the record number of First Division Men play-off final appearances and the most Men KO Final games in history.
From the administration side, Vassallo is also involved in the referee education side and the instruction of present and new referees is ongoing whilst also taking care of the referee assignments in all senior competitions. Other admin duties include media affairs as well as the promotion of basketball around schools and educational institutions.
Finalist Official of the Year Award (Ghazliet Sportivi Nazzjonali): 2003, 2004, 2006 (Winner), 2007, 2008*, 2009*, 2011*, 2012*, 2017, 2018, 2019
*: renounced participating in the final voting and declaring conflict of interest