The International Basketball Federation (Fiba) announced on Thursday that the pre-Olympic men’s basketball tournaments, which will define the remaining four seats for the Tokyo Olympics, postponed to 2021, will be held between 29 June and July 4th of next year, with the groups and places already drawn. The winner of each event guarantees a place in the Japanese capital.
In April, Fiba had scheduled the tournaments to take place between June 22nd and July 4th, 2021. In the end, the entity chose to narrow the competition window, postponing the start date and maintaining the closing date . The Tokyo-2020 Games were postponed by one year, from July 23 to August 8, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Brazil against Montenegro at the Basketball World Cup – Photo: Fiba Disclosure
In Belgrade, Serbia, Dominican Republic, New Zealand, Serbia, Puerto Rico, Italy and Senegal play; in Kaunas, Lithuania, the hosts will enter the court against South Korea, Venezuela, Poland, Slovenia and Angola. In Split, Croatia, Brazil will face the hosts, Germany, Russia, Mexico and Tunisia.
In Victoria, Canada, Canadians will face Greece, Canada, Uruguay, Czech Republic and Turkey. Spain, the current world champion in China in 2019, is already guaranteed a spot in the Olympic tournament, as are Argentina, Australia, France, Iran, Japan (as host), Nigeria and the United States.
NBA stars may be out
With the possibility of the 2020-2021 season starting later than usual (in December) because of the coronavirus pandemic, some players like the Greek Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks) and the Serbian Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets), may be absences in the European teams because of the NBA playoffs. In the American team, names like Stephen Curry, James Harden and LeBron James can be left out.
Stephen Curry United States World basketball – Photo: AFP
Women’s Olympic Tournament Already Defined
The Olympic women’s basketball tournament, which was able to define its qualifiers before the coronavirus pandemic, will be played by Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Japan, South Korea, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Serbia, the United States and Spain, which won their places in the Belgrade, Serbia qualifier in February.
United States Japan women’s basketball Olympics – Photo: REUTERS / Jim Young