WATCH: Qatar all set to host season-opening FIBA 3x3 World Tour
Qatar is once again set to host the world as the 2021 FIBA 3x3 World Tour basketball series will begin with the Doha Masters tournament on March 26 at the Al Gharafa Sports Complex in Doha.
The tournament will feature a total of 14 teams from 10 countries, including the current top-10 teams in the FIBA 3x3 Team Ranking, who will be looking to launch their 2021 season with a positive start in Doha.
The teams who will be doing battle at the two-day event include Liman, Riga, UB, NY Harlem, Princeton, Novi Sad, Amsterdam Talent & Pro, Piran, Sakiai Gulbele, and Edmonton, the top-10. At the same time, Lusail and the newly formed Doha Team will represent the home side. Manila Chooks and Graz complete the lineup.
The teams are divided into four pools with another pool for the qualifiers whose winner will join Pool D.
Pool A comprises last year's finalists Liman, Piran and Sakiai Gulbele. Defending champions Riga are in Pool B alongside Amsterdam Talent & Pro and Edmonton, while Qatar's Lusail, UB and Novi Sad are in Pool C. For Pool D, the teams are NY Harlem and Princeton, with the winner from the qualifiers completing it, while Doha, Graz (Austria) and Manila Chooks will fight for the qualifying spot in the main rounds.
Serbia has the most representation with three teams - UB, Novi Sad and Liman, while Qatar (Lusail and Doha) and the USA (NY Harlem and Princeton) follow with two, respectively. Latvia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Canada, Austria, the Netherlands, and the Philippines are represented by a team each.
Riga, re-loaded with reigning MVP Nauris Miezis and his trusty sidekick Karlis Tasmania, will be hoping to begin the defense of their 2020 title in style with another win in Doha. Also filling up the field will be Liman, Ub, and Novi Sad, the Serbian trio of teams that stand in their way.
Novi Sad will be in action for the first time without Dejan Majstorovic or Marko Savic, who have joined UB this winter following the breakup of the famed team.
The tournament will also be the renewed chance for the North American teams to get back into the World Tour winner's circle. New York Harlem, led by Disco Domo Jones, are back following a disappointing 2020 season, while Princeton (one WT event) and Edmonton (no 2020 World Tour events) return to action in earnest.
The tournament has become an annual trophy stop for Riga, who defeated Liman in back-to-back years in the final. It was a superhero effort in 2020 as Lasmanis hit one of the most memorable Tissot Buzzer Beaters in recent memory.
"We are delighted to host the season-opening edition of the 2021 FIBA 3x3 World Tour. Another weekend of exciting basketball is here, and we can't wait enough to see the players strutting their stuff on the beautiful court here in Doha. This competition is coming up at a challenging time, like the last time, but all hands are on the deck, in partnership with the health authorities, to ensure a hitch-free competition," Qatar Basketball Federation (QBF) Secretary-General Ali Al Malki said.
Last year, despite a difficult situation for players and organizers, the city was able to host a historic event amid the pandemic. While the world still works to recover, Doha continues to provide an excellent venue for FIBA 3x3.
FIBA 3x3 will once again be showing the best 3x3 action across our social media channels, following record-setting viewership and engagement in 2020.
The event will be streamed LIVE on the FIBA 3x3 YouTube, and Facebook channels and our brand new FIBA Twitch account while getting all your favorite memes on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Sina Weibo, Tencent, and Yoku.
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