Hastings' world tournament attracts global interest
Teams from several different countries will be heading to Hastings for the 2018 World Club Basketball Tournament.
The fourth staging of the annual event, hosted by Bexhill Giants Basketball Club and UK - International Events, will take place at Summerfields Leisure Centre on the weekend of September 8-9.
The tournament committee has confirmed it will be hosting the Wales men’s national squad and the tournament’s first African team in the form of Tanzanian professional outfit Vijana City Bulls.
USA will be well represented with professional teams including Dallas Fort Worth United, Chicago Fury, Tuscaloosa Titans and last year’s beaten finalists the New York Court Kings.
These squads will be joined by The Process Basketball France, Argyle Kings (England) and London Patriots (Poland), with a few others to be added in the lead-up to one of Europe’s most recognised events.
The reputation of the event has grown exponentially and as a result a roster of excellent teams have been eager to compete in the UK’s only international event for professional and amateur players.
The tournament has received enquiries from as far afield as Australia, St Marteen, New Zealand and Africa, and a number of teams have already committed to next year’s tournament.
Due to the growing global reputation of the tournament, its founder and Bexhill Giants chairman Eric Douglin was approached by a group of entrepreneurs and team owners from the USA to develop a global league, linked to the event.
Following numerous transatlantic telephone calls and meetings, the World Club Basketball Association A League was formed and Douglin appointed the league’s commissioner.
The objective is having the professional league running by 2019 with teams visiting Hastings, and cities around the world, with major TV networks broadcasting the league to a worldwide audience.
Douglin said: “I’m overwhelmed with the response we have had from teams to compete in this year’s event, the tournament has really caught the imagination of teams across the globe.
“Having NBA players and top overseas professionals compete in the tournament in previous years, along with our excellent media channels, has contributed to the growth of the only international basketball tournament in the UK being exposed worldwide, and putting Bexhill and Hastings on the map.
“In addition, I am proud to have been appointed commissioner of the World Club Basketball Association in recognition of the success of the World Club Basketball Tournament. This will help raise the profile of the town and basketball in Sussex as a whole.”
The World Club Basketball Tournament is a self-funded event and sponsors are welcome. For more details, please visit www.worldclubbasketballtournament.com
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