MANILA, Philippines – FIBA is eyeing three venues in Manila for the 27th FIBA Asia Championship in August 2013.
In a press conference hosted by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) during the half time break of the Talk ‘N Text-Rain or Shine Game 2, SBP President Manny Pangilinan said that among the sites being considered are the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena, the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City, and the Ninoy Aquino Stadium in Manila.
“Inclined ang FIBA Asia that the main venue will be at the Mall of Asia,” said Pangilinan.
“There will be a secondary venue for the minor games and that is either the Cuneta [Astrodome] and the Ninoy Aquino [Stadium].”
FIBA recently decided to move the tournament from Beirut, Lebanon to Manila in view of the current situation in Lebanon and the rest of West Asia.
The last time the Philippines hosted the FIBA Asia Championship was 40 years ago.
Pangilinan said they expect up to 1,000 athletes and officials from 16 countries to attend the event, which serves as a qualifier to the 2014 World Basketball Cup in Spain.
“Hosting this event is not gonna be easy because it's a complex undertaking on the part of the SBP and this country, so we need the cooperation of the national and local governments particularly the cities of Manila and Pasay in hosting this event,” he said.