In historic move, the 2017 Vanuatu Pacific Mini Games will feature a shortened version of the sport of basketball following last month’s announcement that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will include 3x3 as part of the Olympic Basketball program starting 2020.
A 3 x 3 version of the sport of basketball will see three players face off against each other rather than the normal five players against five.
Each match lasts a maximum of 10 minutes, with a 12-second shot clock. It is played on half a court, with one hoop. There is no halftime, and no quarters or no time-outs. And it is typically accompanied by non-stop music, DJs and break-dancers.
The discipline has leapt from its debut at the Singapore Youth Olympic Games in 2010 to a spot at the world’s biggest sporting spectacle at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo Japan.
Basketball Fiji's Lai Puamau welcomed the new initiative and their interest in particpating in the 3 x 3 basktball event during the 2017 Pacific Mni Games.
“Basketball Fiji wholeheartedly supports the initiative to participate in the Mini Games in December," he said.
"This initiative is in line with Basketball Fiji intent to develop 3x3 at a National Level through participation at regional and International levels.”
Pacific Games Council Executive Director Andrew Minoque received strong support for 3x3 from across the region when a late call for expressions of interest to include the sport was made.
“The Pacific Games Council is delighted to announce the inclusion of 3x3 Basketball for the upcoming Pacific Mini Games in Vanuatu. Having recently been added to the Olympic Games program, there is no doubt that this exciting new format will be a big hit in the Pacific and at the Games in December.”
FIBA Executive Director in Oceania and Singapore David Crocker expressed FIBAs support of inclusion of 3x3 in the Mini Games.
“We are really pleased with 3x3 joining the program in Vanuatu. FIBA believes that 3x3 is the perfect event for multi-sport events as Games organisers modernise their programs.”
“Smaller athlete numbers with fewer officials requirements can deliver a really energetic event that the public really enjoy. Having this opportunity to showcase a 3x3 event at the Mini Games in Vanuatu will hopefully inspire more of the regional sports leaders to support this basketball discipline grow in their own nations.”
The addition of 3x3 to the Games program marks a huge step forward in the development of the sport throughout the Pacific. This will greatly assist countries in taking advantage of the new pathway presented by 3x3 at both the regional and global level.
”3x3 requires only three people to form a team and it requires only a half-court to play on. In many villages throughout the Pacific it is possible to hold 3x3 games,” added Mr Crocker. “From this village setting, the dream of representing your nation at the Mini Games, the World Championships and now the Olympic Games is possible.”
“New Zealand has been World Champion, Guam has won Bronze at the Youth Olympics, it can be done by smaller nations. It is now up to the players to get their teammates together and start playing, the more you play, the greater your opportunities can be.”
The Pacific Mini Games will take place from 4th to 15th of December 2017 in Port Villa Vanuatu.
Last Modified on 12/07/2017 11:32