PNG start 3×3 basketball campaign


PAPUA New Guinea make their Pacific Games basketball three-on-three campaign debut at the Faleata Sports Complex in Apia, Samoa, today.
Twelve men’s and 13 women’s teams will be battling for the inaugural title over the next three days.
Fiba Oceania competitions manager and tournament director Amanda Jenkins said: “We are excited for three-on-three to be played at the Games for the first time.
“The Mini Games were hugely successful, and we look forward to more teams participating this time. It will be a great end to the Pacific Games.”
The discipline will also make its debut at the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.
In the Mini Games, Samoa and the Cook Islands took home gold in the men’s and women’s divisions respectively and are viewed as favourites at the Pacific Games.
The teams will be pooled based on the National Federation’s Fiba three-on-three rankings at the start of June with Vanuatu and New Caledonia entering as the top teams going into the event.
The format of the tournament includes two pools of six teams in the men’s division and two pools of seven and six teams for the women’s division.
The top four of each pool will advance to the knockout round, play a crossover quarterfinal, semifinal and final round.
Competing countries in the men’s division are PNG, Vanuatu, Fiji , American Samoa, Guam, Nauru, Solomon Islands, New Caledonia, Samoa, Cook Islands, Marshall Islands and Tahiti.
PNG, Vanuatu, Fiji, Cook Islands, American Samoa, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, New Caledonia, Samoa, Guam, Nauru and Tahiti will be competing in the women’s division.
The development of three-on-three has been spearheaded by Fiba Oceania three-on-three development manager Annie La Fleur with various visits, workshops and clinics in the last few years to introduce the sport across the Pacific.
La Fleur highlighted the rising popularity of three-on-three basketball and the added opportunity for national federations to participate in more basketball events with the inclusion of the discipline to the Games.
“The growth of three-on-three in the region has been phenomenal in the last few years, it is also a testament to the region’s warm reception to the urban sport,” she said.
“The introduction of three-on-three to the Games will give more opportunities to our national federations to send teams to represent their countries.”
– gamesnewsservice

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