Uncommon ball

In partnership with the Ministry of Natural Resources, SIBUR and Wilson created a unique basketball from waste-recycled plastic for the VTB United League.

This one-of-a-kind ball was created as part of the nation-wide Sort It Right project launched by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Russia to promote waste sorting, one of the most effective waste management practices.

In 2017, the VTB United League in partnership with SIBUR launched the Basketbottle environmental campaign as part of the Sort It Right initiative. Russian basketball arenas are fitted out with basketball ring-styled trash bins for plastic bottles. All collected bottles are recycled.

The ball is made of recycled plastic bottles and will be an official basketball of the VTB United League in the new season. Despite its rather exotic origin, the ball is fully suitable for professional games and meets all the criteria set by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA). The ball's internal lining is made of a material obtained from two recycled 1.5-litre plastic bottles.

This eco-friendly ball was presented during the VTB United League’s All Star game that brought together Russian basketball stars, politicians, businessmen, and public figures. The game was attended by Sergei Ivanov, President’s Special Envoy for Environment Protection and Transport, Dmitry Konov, Chairman of the Management Board of SIBUR Holding, and TV host Ivan Urgant.

“We are contributing to improving public environmental awareness and behaviour through a more responsible approach to waste recycling. A major environmental advantage of plastics is that they are nearly 100% recoverable and recyclable. The eco ball is a perfect example of how plastic can be used to create new – useful and interesting – things,” Dmitry Konov, Chairman of the Management Board of SIBUR Holding, said.

“It was our Honorary President Sergei Ivanov who set a trend for environmental responsibility of the League. It is important for us to make consistency of our activities a good example for other leagues and companies. We have organised waste sorting at sport arenas and made a step further towards the use of recycled plastic in everyday life. Basketball players are very meticulous about the ball as the most important element of the game. We have carefully tested the eco ball and found that it meets our highest standards,” VTB United League President Sergei Kuschenko said.

The eco-friendly ball was presented during the VTB United League’s All Star game.

“The Wilson brand has long positioned itself as an active partner to many environment protection initiatives. The unique eco ball created in partnership with SIBUR for the VTB United League, our long-standing partner, demonstrates vividly how two different businesses can work together when they share principles of environmental awareness. In a little while, similar basketballs from Wilson will be available in specialised retail points and sports stores across the country,” said Tatiana Vetrova, CEO of Amer Sports, Wilson's exclusive distributor in Russia.

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