If one thing is sure, it’s that 2019 has been anything but a normal year. The COVID-19 pandemic, along with the lockdowns, quarantines, and social distancing mandates have all resulted in an unusual basketball season.
Even with the starkly different season this year compared with previous seasons, professional basketball player, and power forward/center for Union Lavaux Riviera, Arnaud Barapila has helped his team go far. Thanks to his efforts on the court, Lavaux has been able to get into an LNB championship. This impression feat has been both praised and noticed. Getting Lavaux into this championship has been something that helps improve the overall standing of the team in the arena of Swiss basketball.
Arnaud has been playing professionally as a basketball player in Switzerland for 14 seasons at this point in his career. During the 14th season, he has repeatedly demonstrated how valuable of a player he is for both Lavaux and Switzerland. With the threat and disruption of COVID-19 being a new upset in the game this year, it has been even more impressive than usual.
Playing during COVID-19 was very different from past seasons Arnaud played. Switzerland recently effectively banned all public events, with basketball being included. This meant there would be far fewer people in the crowds, and events in general. Yet, Arnaud and his team were still able to score several wins during this pandemic. All of their hard work and determination paid off because they have gotten into the LNB championship.
Getting into the LNB championship isn’t the first achievement Arnaud can call his own. He is also a 1x champion LNA for Switzerland’s 1st division, Geneva Devils 2003/2004. He also has 4 LNB titles in Switzerland 2nd division.
Arnaud’s achievements continue beyond these. He also has achievements for Bernex Basket (2009/2010), Lausanne Foxies (2013/2014 & 2014/2015), and Vevey Riviera Basket (2016/2017). He is also a 1x Champion Italia for Pallacanestro Cantù (2010/2011).
As many achievements as Arnaud has had over his 14 seasons, there were also a few challenging moments for him, as with every player. He lost the 2017/2018 Switzerland 2nd division Finals, as well as the Meyrin Basket 2018/2019. However, given his long 14-season career, merely having these losses is actually impressive.
The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped the way basketball is played in Switzerland and around the world. Even with all of the restrictions and additional safety precautions put in place, Arnaud has been able to deliver some impressive wins for Lavaux this season. Will he keep up the stellar gameplay he has been showing off? Time will tell, but it sure does seem like it.
As Arnaud looks to the future, he seems himself cementing a legacy for Lavaux and Swiss basketball that will show he rose above the pandemic to continue giving it his best on the court.