SBP keen on hosting 2013 Fiba Asia
MANILA, Philippines—The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas is making a serious bid to host the 2013 Fiba Asia Championship.
SBP president Manny V. Pangilinan recently met with the top brass of the International Basketball Federation (Fiba) and offered to host in Manila the continental qualifier for the 2014 Fiba World Championship.
Pangilinan said Fiba president Yvan Mainini and secretary general Patrick Baumann welcomed the proposition and told the tycoon to submit a formal proposal.
Baumann has set a tentative deadline for the proposal this weekend. He met with Pangilinan after Smart Gilas Pilipinas lost the bronze medal to South Korea in the 26th Fiba Asia Championship in Wuhan, China.
“Yes, we will bid,” said Pangilinan. “I told them that there’s going to be a new coliseum [in Metro Manila], so there will be two good coliseums.”
Aside from the refurbished Smart Araneta Coliseum, another venue designed to house prestigious international sports events is rising at the SM Mall Of Asia in Pasay City.
“Of course, we expect a lot of competitors in that bidding, but we will make a serious run at it,” Pangilinan said.
Three continental spots are on offer in the 24-nation 2014 Fiba World Championship set to be staged in six cities in Spain, including Madrid and Barcelona.
The SBP made a bid for Manila to host the recent Asian championship, the qualifier for next year’s London Olympics, but lost out to Lebanon.
Unimpressed with Beirut’s hosting of the Stankovic Cup last year, Fiba moved the Asian championship to Wuhan instead.
The Philippines had never reached the semifinals of every Asian championship since 1987 before Smart Gilas made the breakthrough this year.
Smart Gilas duplicated the performance of the 1987 national team coached by Joe Lipa and backstopped by PBA Most Valuable Player Alvin Patrimonio.
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