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PBA 3x3 eyes to become springboard to Olympics

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
PBA 3x3 eyes to become springboard to Olympics
The TNT Tropang Giga were the inaugural champions of PBA 3x3 when they ruled the first leg last week
PBA media bureau

MANILA, Philippines – Asia's oldest professional hoops league has already delved into the world of 3x3 basketball with the success of the inaugural PBA 3x3.

And according to Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas 3x3 National Program head Ronnie Magsanoc, this is only the beginning as the league eyes high goals to achieve in the coming years.

"Ang layunin natin talaga sa PBA 3x3 at sa SBP ay makapagtala ng Top 50 players, at least, dito sa hanay ng PBA 3x3... Kung magagawa natin yan, yan yung magiging basehan ng federation rankings patungo sa Olympic Qualifying Tournament para sa Paris 2024 Olympics," Magsanoc said in the recent episode of One Sports' The Game.

"Yun yung long-term mission and vision ng PBA 3x3 at ng SBP," he added.

3x3 hoops made its debut in the Tokyo Olympics, where Latvia and the United States ruled the men's and women's division, respectively.

The Philippines had actually qualified for the OQT for Tokyo earlier this year, with players coming from the PBA and the country's other 3x3 tournament Chooks To Go Pilipinas 3x3.

Owing to poor preparation, though, the Philippines ended up dead last in a 20-team field after they lost all their games.

Now with the PBA's own 3 a side league, Magsanoc hopes the country will be more ready once another shot at Olympic 3x3 comes around.

"[S]a ngayon, we want to develop dedicated 3x3 specialists," Magsanoc said.

"We want to be a destination competition and we want to increase and trumpet the awareness of the game," he added.

The first three legs of the PBA 3x3 was filled with action and competitiveness with the TNT Tropang Giga, Meralco Bolts and Sista Super Sealers tasting championships.

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