MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines will host the 27th FIBA Asia Championship.
FIBA Asia Secretary General Hagop Khajirian made the announcement on FIBA Asia’s website Thursday night, January 10.
The tournament was originally set in Lebanon but political unrest there prompted FIBA officials to move the venue to Manila.
“Unfortunately, the current situation in the region and the on-going civil war in Syria, which has its indirect effect on the countries in the whole of West Asia, especially on Lebanon, creates doubts about the stability that we might not have, at least, till the fixed dates of our event,” explained Khajirian.
Philippine National Team head coach Chot Reyes tweeted about the announcement, obviously elated.
It’s OFFICIAL: Manila hosts 2013 FIBA ASIA CHAMPIONSHIPS! All d hardwork thru Xmas & New Year paid off. Now d really difficult work begins— Chot Reyes (@coachot) January 10, 2013
“We are honored to host this prestigious event,” said SBP Executive Director Renauld ‘Sonny’ Barrios.
The 27th FIBA Asia Championship, which will be played from August 1 to 11, 2013, will serve as the the qualifying event for the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain.
The three best teams from the FIBA Asia Championship will represent Asia at the 2014 FIBA World Cup.
Smart-Gilas Pilipinas is currently playing in the 2013 Dubai International Basketball Championship. The team is composed mainly of players from the Gilas cadet pool with only a few holdovers from the Gilas team that bagged gold in the 2012 Jones Cup.
Coach Chot Reyes, irked by negative comments on the roster, said the Dubai tourney is meant to prepare the teams for tougher competition in the future. – Rappler.com