Furlong with the awards he received from
the FIBA Hall of Fame
(Jorge Dominelli/El Gráfico, 2007)
played his last game on 6 January 1957, when Villa del
Parque won 71-52 to Welcome of Montevideo, scoring twenty
of the points. The suspension of the golden generation of
players at the height of their careers had major
ramifications for Argentine basketball. It would be the
1990s before the country would again become a force
internationally. One other consequence of this was that it
also led to the demise of
as the epicentre of basketball in Argentina.
Furlong the suspension brought down the curtain on a
celebrated career, littered with many ironies, and still
in his prime at age of twenty-nine, depriving Argentine
basketball of one its greatest talents. In summary, his
accomplishments included fifty appearances for the
Argentine team, one World Championship, two Olympic Games,
two Silver medals in the Pan American Games (Buenos Aires
1951 and Mexico City 1955), the Gold medal in the World
University Games of 1953 in Dortmund and six times Champion of Buenos Aires.
only is Furlong considered one of the greatest basketball
players of all time, but he also excelled in tennis both
as a doubles player and manager. Following his suspension
from playing basketball, he concentrated on tennis and
attained seventh in the national rankings. In 1966 he was
invited to join the committee of the Asociación Argentina
de Tenis (AAT), becoming vice-president. In the same year
he was appointed coach of the Argentine Davis Cup team, a
post he held until 1977. His greatest achievement was
bringing the team to semi-finals of the Davis Cup in his
final year as coach. Players under his tutelage included
the legendary Guillermo Villas, the first South American
male player to win a grand slam event, who first competed
in 1970, and José-Luis Clerc in 1976.
devoting considerable time to sport, he also built up a
very successful business concern following his forced
retirement from the game. In 1958, the ten-year moratorium
on the Furlong family going into business in the
transportation sector ended. Oscar, together with his
brothers Eduardo and Carlos, founded Transportes Furlong,
in Santa Isabel, Cordoba, concentrating on hauling cars from the new Kaiser Car
factory. Transportes Furlong grew to become the one of the
largest carriers in Argentina.
was some years before Furlong’s immense contribution to
basketball was finally recognised, beginning in 1980 when
he received one of most prestigious honours in Argentina,
the Konex Platinum prize  for his contribution to
Argentine sport. Other honours followed - he received the
Delfo Cabrera prize from the Argentine Senate in 2005 and
in the same year was declared a ‘distinguished person’
by the legislature of the autonomous city of Buenos Aires, along with the other world champions from 1950.
1 March 2007, FIBA officially inaugurated its Hall of Fame
Spain and announced its first inductees, who were chosen on the
basis of an outstanding contribution to the sport at the
international level and an outstanding contribution to the
development and status of the sport. Among the first
inductees was Oscar Furlong. As a measure of his
contribution and standing in the sport, not only did it
include such stars such as Bill Russell, the renowned
former Boston Celtics player and a contemporary of Furlong
in the NCAA, but also, posthumously James Naismith, the
founder of the game.
am extremely grateful to Pillín, the subject of the
article, to Eduardo Furlong for adding to my research, and
to May Furlong, Willy Fox and Ronnie Quinn for their help.
Crack is a word in the Rioplatense dialect defined as a
person who distinguishes him/herself in an extraordinary
manner in an activity: Jose Gobello, Nuevo
Diccionario Lunfardo (Buenos Aires:
Corregidor, 2003). The footballer Diego Maradona and the rugby
player Juan Martín Hernández have been accorded this
name in the Argentine press.
Juan Domingo Perón (1895 -1974), Argentine general and
politician and three times President of Argentina.
Julio Argentino Roca Paz (1843 -1914), President of
Argentina from 12 October 1880 to 12 October 1886 and
again from 12 October 1898 to 12 October 1904.
Defined in the Oxford
Spanish Dictionary as
crafty devil or rascal.
The Argentine national championship was only created in
Delfo Cabrera (1919 -1981), Argentine athlete and winner
of the marathon at the 1948 London Olympics. He was a
close friend of General Perón and an active member of
Oscar Furlong, Raúl Pérez Varela, Ricardo González,
Juan Carlos Uder, Rubén Menini, Omar Monza, Pedro Bustos,
Alberto López, Roberto Viau, Leopoldo Contarbio, Hugo del
Vecchio and Vito Liva.
The night of the torches.
Juan Manuel Fangio (1911-1995), was a race-car driver from
Argentina, who dominated the first decade of Formula One racing in
Jump Shot: A shot performed while jumping in the air in
which the ball is released at the highest point off the
ground. It is often used when shooting over a defender
trying to block the ball.
Eduardo A. Lonardi Doucet (1896-1956), de facto president
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in 1980 and are awarded on a yearly basis to distinguished
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