Alfons Hörmann resigns in December.
But who will be his successor?
Photo: Frank Rumpenhorst / picture alliance / dpa
Ingo Weiss, the President of the German Basketball Federation, wanted to clearly demonstrate how united German sport is.
On Tuesday, the spokesman for the leading associations in the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) appeared in front of the press to explain how things will continue in the umbrella organization of sport after the era of Alfons Hörmann.
Because the long-controversial president announced in the summer that after eight years he would vacate his post at the next general meeting in December.
CFO Kaweh Niroomand will then also step down.
For weeks, three working groups had dealt with the future of the DOSB and discussed a number of proposals, Weiss now described.
The result was a plan for the further development of the association.
Above all, however, the sports officials agreed on a procedure as to how the important position in German top-class sport should be filled in the future.
The next embarrassment may already be imminent
In addition to a headhunter, an eight-person "search committee" is supposed to help.
Under the leadership of the former Federal President Christian Wulff, the committee, to which Weiss himself should also belong, will find a suitable personality who will be supported by everyone and will stand for a new departure for the battered organization.
Because in the past few months, the DOSB had given a pathetic picture.
Employees had complained in an open, anonymous letter about a "climate of fear" at the headquarters in Frankfurt and criticized Hörmann in particular.
The president, in turn, was surprised by the decision of the IOC to award the Olympic Games in 2032 to Australia without even delving into the Ruhr region's interest in hosting it.
And at the games in Tokyo in July and August, the German athletes fell far short of expectations.
But the next embarrassment may already be imminent.
Because the sports officials have obviously given too little thought to what specific tasks the search committee should have.
Doubts about the selection process
In any case, on Friday, three days after the press appearance, Weiss received a letter of protest signed by nine sports associations, including the athletics association, which has a particularly large number of members, and the German Gymnastics Association.
"Dear Ingo," write the officials, should please define the "exact procedure" for evaluating and selecting candidates.
In any case, it is not possible for Wulff and his commission to impair the election of the delegates at the general meeting “by assessing the candidates beforehand”.
Ranking lists, prioritization or other evaluations would contradict a democratic selection process.
Rather, the body should only assess the general suitability for the office.
But that should lead to a fight for several applicants at the meeting.
Weiss and the spokesman for the state sports associations, Jörg Ammon, who is also responsible for the procedure, and the spokeswoman for the associations with special tasks, Barbara Oettinger, had probably imagined it differently.
They wanted to choose the most powerful German sports official in the commission behind closed doors.
At the general assembly in Weimar, the delegates would only have confirmed the selection.
It could have been a glamorous enthronement.
Triathlon boss with staying power
In fact, no candidate has yet ventured out publicly.
The table tennis functionary Thomas Weikert is considered very interested internally and would probably also be supported by associations that have now signed the letter to Weiss.
Obviously there is great concern that the Limburg lawyer could be sorted out by the commission beforehand.
In any case, the statutes stipulate that candidates can also stand at the meeting in December independently of a selection committee.
Martin Engelhardt, head of the German Triathlon Union, and one of the nine signatories also knows this.
Engelhardt was one of the loudest Hörmann critics.
In 2018 he made a quick decision against Hörmann, but lost significantly.
He may now be planning to run again and does not want to be slowed down by a former head of state.