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Indian Men win gold at 3x3 South Asian Basketball Meet

Details from India's win at the SABA Qualifiers.

The Indian Basketball team with their gold medals

In a spectacular day of basketball, the Indian senior men’s team has been crowned champions in the 3x3 South Asian Basketball Association (SABA) Qualifiers 2015 a short while ago at Gateway College in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Facing familiar opponents Colombo Sri Lanka Reds in the finals, whom they had lost to yesterday in the league stages, India showed great heart and courage to dominate the Islanders at home 21-10.

The day began with India dominating Nepal 20-10 in a must win last league match to qualify to the semifinals as the second-seeded team. In the semis, India continued its strong form to beat Sri Lanka Blacks 18-10, before powering through to a 21-10 finals victory.

An excited Siddhant Shinde said after the gold medal finish, “We did it for the 1.24 billion people of India. We hope this inspires the youth of the nation to take up basketball.” As South Asia winners, the four man squad comprising Shinde, Basil Philip, Rajesh Uppar and Jeevanantham Pandi, has now qualified for the 3x3 World Tour which will be held on 15th and 16th August 2015 in Beijing, China.

The Indian senior men’s basketball team participated in the 3x3 South Asian Basketball Association (SABA) Qualifiers 2015 in Colombo, Sri Lanka on 1st and 2nd August 2015. The four member team comprised Basil Philip (Kerala), Rajesh Uppar (Karnataka), Siddhant Shinde (Maharashtra) and Jeevanantham Pandi (Tamil Nadu) flew out of Bengaluru to Colombo on 31st July morning, and will return to Bengaluru on 3rd August 2015. 

India had not participated in the inaugural 3x3 SABA Championship back in 2014, which was eventually won by hosts Bangladesh.

Basil Philip has made it to the Indian team for the second time, after representing the national side during the 2013 SABA 5x5 Championship in New Delhi. The remaining three, Uppar, Shinde and Jeevanantham are all first timers in the senior side. "3x3 is a fast paced game in which Indian players have a chance to compete against the top countries in the world as we develop the 5x5 version of the sport. This is a great opportunity for these players and if they compete hard and win, they'll have the opportunity to play in China for even more and greater exposure." said Mr. Chander Mukhi Sharma, Secretary General of the BFI.

Elaborating further, BFI President K Govindaraj said, "We wanted to give these four players, who worked extremely hard during the coaching camp prior to SABA, the chance to obtain valuable international experience. They didn't make the SABA 5x5 team but all four are young, talented and extremely hard working. They will certainly be part of future Indian teams and this will be valuable exposure for all of them."

INDIAN TEAM FOR THE 3x3 SABA QUALIFIERS 2015

SL NO.

NAME

POSITION*

JERSEY NO.

DATE OF BIRTH

PLACE OF BIRTH

1.

Basil Philip

SG/SF

12

10/01/1991

Sulthanbathery, Kerala

2.

Rajesh Uppar

PG

4

20/01/1991

Dharwad, Karnataka

3.

Siddhant Shinde

PG/SG

9

15/06/1991

Pune, Maharashtra

4.

Jeevanantham Pandi

PF/C

10

13/10/1994

Virudhunagar, Tamil Nadu

*C= Centre, PF= Power Forward, SF= Small Forward, SG= Shooting Guard, PG= Point Guard

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