Club’s History

The official founding date of Darüşşafaka Sports Club (DSK) is 1914, but the first modern gymnastics and physical education activities in the school go back to the beginning of the nineteenth century. Sports activities, which started with football in the school yard, became more disciplined in 1912 with the gymnasium built by the Evkaf Nezareti. After the official registration of the club in 1914, the football team made its first significant success in 1920 and finished second in the Turkish League in the Istanbul league (second league), defeating Beşiktaş 2-0. The 2-1 victory over Fenerbahce 2-1 in 1921-22 season was one of the most remarkable events of the year. Another important event during the same period was that Darüşşafaka was one of the members of the respected foundation called Türkiye İdman Cemiyetleri Vakfı in 1922. Club chairman Cemal Faris was elected to the board of directors of the this foundation.

While the activities of the club’s football team shut down in the 1930s, they continued with sports school teams in Darüşşafaka. The volleyball team, which was the most popular sport of those dates, won the Istanbul championship in 1934. School football team won the Istanbul championship in 1927, but could not repeat it. Many football players who played for Darüşşafaka went on to play for big clubs in their thirties and forties. Among those were Besiktaş’s Nazim Oner, Galatasaray’s Musa Sezer, Fenerbahçe’s Murat Alyuz and Vefa’s Galip Haktanır. The last three players played in the national team.

DSK, insterted basketball together with football and volleyball when club’s second beggining started in 1951. From the second half of the 1940s onwards, the school basketball team began to take part in inter-school competitions. The club team also participated in the second division in 1951-52 season and advanced to the Istanbul First League. The green-black’s continued their fight in the fifties and became stronger when the players of the school developed and mastered their Basketball skills. With the addition of critical transfers, the Darüşşafaka basketball team accomplished its first major success as the Istanbul League champion in the 1959-60 season. The same roster won back to back championships in 1960-61 and 1961-62 season in Turkey, taking its place in Turkish Basketball history. Many basketball players from Darüşşafaka have also contributed to the national team and some have contributed greatly to the country’s basketball as a coach as well. The first names that come to mind are Yalçın Granit and Mehmet Baturalp, and the names such as Nedret Uyguç, Şevket Taşlıca, Niyazi Turan, Hüdai Budanur, Dursun Açıkbaş, Atila Erten and Önder Okan should also be mentioned.

Darüşşafaka Sports Club’s another branch that peaked in the fifties, was voleybol. The team as composed of talented players who came to Istanbul from Anatolia to study in became the Istanbul champion in 1957-58 season and reached the Turkey championship in the 1958-59 season. Players such as Atila Sesören, Nasuhi Unlu, Cafer Aksakal, Ayhan Altug, Ender Kurt, Yalcin Gordurur and Yildiray Pagda also played for the national team.

Following these historical successes, the club’s president, Refik Darcan, had to leave his job due to serious health problems and the Darüşşafaka Sports Club entered into financial trouble. As a result, the star players of the basketball and volleyball teams transferred to various clubs. In both branches, the teams started to compete in the Istanbul Second League in 1964-65 season. After competing in the minor volleyball leagues the volleyball branch was closed down in the mid 1980s. Meanwhile on the basketball team competed in the local leagues for a long time before playing in second division of Turkey from 1971 to 1974. The Darüşşafaka Basketball team advanced to the Second division again in 1988 and was able to advance to the first division following the 1992-1993 season. In 1997, Darüşşafaka competed in the Koraç Cup and advanced to the second round as the leader in its group. In 2000 Daçka advanced to the quarter-finals in the Saporta Cup. In 2010, Darüşşafaka, who continued his campaign in the Second Division, was promoted to the First Division as a champion after its strategic cooperation with Doğuş Group in 2013. In the same year, the chess team  was promoted to the Chess First Division as a champion in the 2013. Darüşşafaka Doğuş, with its new name, joined the Euroleague in 2015, finishing third in the regular season. In Euroleague, this first season was a success for the club as Daçka was able to advance to last 16. In 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons Darüşşafaka also advanced to the playoffs in the Super League. Darüşşafaka Doğuş also reached the quarter-finals in Euroleague and lost in the final to Fenerbahçe in the Turkish Cup during the 2016-2017 season. After an excellent performance in 2017-18 Darüşşafaka won its first majör European title as it brought the Eurocup Championship to Turkey. In addition Darüşşafaka chess team finished seventh in 2015, fourth in 2016 and finished third in the 2017 Turkish Chess Super League.