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Novi Sad Al Wahda’s historic streak continues at FIBA 3×3 World Tour Debrecen Masters 2018

DEBRECEN (FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2018) – Novi Sad Al Wahda (SRB) won their 4th Masters of the season in Debrecen, Hungary on August 30, 2018.

The number one team in the world extended its winning streak to 22 games in a row after defeating Riga (LAT) 21-10 in the final and became the first squad in 3×3 history to win 4 Masters in the same season.

Dusan Bulut won his 3rd MVP trophy of the season after scoring 11 points in the final alone and 44 points in 2 days, a season high for any player at the World Tour this year.

This is Novi Sad Al Wahda’s 14th World Tour Masters title. They took home the USD 30,000 cheque for the 4th time this year after their success in Saskatoon, Prague and Lausanne.

In the individual contests, Ivan Nedeljkovic (Kragujevac, SRB) won the shoot-out while Ukraine star dunker Vadim ‘Miller’ Poddubchenko dominated the dunk contest and cashed in USD 2,500 in prize money.

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Riga go back to back at Raiffeisen Bank Bucharest 3×3 Challenger

BUCHAREST (3×3 Challengers) – After one of the most spectacular games of the season, Riga (LAT) won for the second time in a row the Raiffeisen Bank Bucharest 3×3 Challenger, edging out Novi Sad Al Wahda (SRB) by just one point, 21-20 in the final.

The tournament took place in ParkLake Shopping Center, a unique mall from District 3 of the Romanian capital city.

Nauris Miezis scored the final basket of a game filled with spectacular passes, two-point field goals and some amazing display of skills, hard work and determination from both teams. It was 3×3 basketball at his best between two of the best teams in the world right now.

The game was a roller-coaster, with Riga in the driving seat from the get-go. The Latvians had a flying start and led 7-2 after just 90 seconds. Novi Sad climbed back to just one possession 10-8 for Riga with 7 minutes to go.

Karlis Lasmanis and Miezis were on fire and Riga were leading 14-8 midway through the game. But then Dusan Bulut happened. He scored five points in a row, Tamas Ivosev add another bomb from long range and suddenly Novi Sad were up 16-15.

The final minutes were truly crazy, with both teams going at each other, trading baskets and playing with the hearts of an amazing crowd. In the end Miezis squeezed the ball into the basket on a tough reverse lay-up and Riga got the big credit card with 10,000 USD offered by Raiffeisen Bank and Mastercard.

It was the second time in 2 weeks that Riga defeated Novi Sad Al Wahda in the final of a challenger.

Surprisingly enough the number 1 team in the world still hasn’t won a single challenger this season (in 7 tries)… yet they’ve won the 2 World Tour Masters they’ve participated in. Riga on the other hand are now the team with the most challengers wins this season. After their success in Nanjing (China), Lipik (Croatia), Ventspils (in Latvia 2 weeks ago) and now Bucharest (Romania), they’ve now won 4 challengers this year.

With this win, Riga secured a ticket to the Debrecen Masters, which will take place on August 30-31. Since Novi Sad Al Wahda already had qualified (based on ranking), the team ranked 3rd in Bucharest (Team Belgrade (SRB)) will join the party in Hungary.

The 3 other teams who already have their pass for the Debrecen Masters are Humpolec Bernard (CZE) and Kranj (SLO) and last year’s winners Liman Tesla Voda (SRB).

After playing for three days in the side event organized together with the challenger, the kids got the chance to share the same stage as their idols during the award ceremony, receiving their prizes from the hands of the best players in the world.

The next Challenger is the Cedevita Ljubljana 3×3 Challenger and will be held in Slovenia on August 17-18.

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Riga Ghetto Basket win Ventspils Challenger

VENTSPILS (3×3 Challenger) – Riga Ghetto Basket (LAT) won the inaugural edition of the Ventspils Challenger after coming from behind to beat Novi Sad Al Wahda (SRB) in the final on July 28-29, 2018.

Novi Sad Al Wahda (SRB) was the team to beat after finishing 1st at the FIBA 3×3 World Tour Saskatoon Masters on July 21-22. However, Riga found their footing with all their local support. Novi Sad Al Wahda had a 4 point lead going into the final 2 minutes….which isn’t enough in 3×3. Nauris Miezis scored two big 2-pointers – and an even bigger assist to a flying Karlis Lasmanis for a 21-17 Riga win.

Both Novi Sad Al Wahda and Riga Ghetto Basket had qualified for the Lausanne Masters already. This means the third and fourth place team Kranj (SLO) and Kaunas (LTU) earned their ticket to the Olympic Capital.

The other 5 teams who have already qualified to the Lausanne Masters are Zemun (SRB), Liman Tesla Voda (SRB), Ljubljana (SLO), Humpolec Bernard (CZE), and Nice (FRA)

The next Challenger is the Raiffeisen Bank Bucharest Challenger and will be held in Bucharest, Romania on August 11-12

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Riga return to winning ways at Cedevita Lipik 3×3 Challenger

LIPIK (3×3 Challengers) – It took them over 2 months but Riga (LAT) finally won their 2nd Challenger of the season after edging out (21-18) Humpolec Bernard (CZE) in the final of the Cedevita Lipik 3×3 Challenger in Croatia on June 22-23, 2018.

After dropping their opener against local favorites Split Statist (CRO), it looked like the bad streak was about to continue for the young Latvian team. After winning the Nanjing Challenger in April, Riga missed 3 straight opportunities to qualify for the World Tour in Moscow, The Hague and Hang Zhou.

Moscow must have been on their mind during the final in Lipik. Riga were in control, up 20-17 in the semi-finals when Ondrej Siska hit back-to-back 2-pointers to win the game for Humpolec Bernard in the Russian capital.

But this time around, Riga did not let the Czech star get hot and tournament MVP Karlis Lasmanis finished things off from close range in the title game.

Riga took home 10,000 USD, Humpolec 6,000 and both teams stamped their ticket to the World Tour Lausanne Masters.

Riga now have secured 3 Masters this season (including Saskatoon and Chengdu, based on ranking ). For Humpolec, the number is already 4 (including Utsunomiya, Prague and Debrecen).

No team on the professional circuit has been more on fire than Humpolec in the last 2 months. They earned a ticket to the World Tour in each one of the Challengers they played this season. The Czechs finished 2nd in Wuxi, Moscow, Lipik and won in Limassol last week.

Five teams from the Top 10 and 5 more from the Top 20 competed in Croatia over the weekend.

The next Challengers will be held in Kaunas and Vieques on June 30 – July 1.

Final Standings:

  1. Riga (LAT)
  2. Humpolec Bernard (CZE)
  3. Belgrade (SRB)
  4. Split Statist (CRO)
  5. Nice (FRA)

Top Scorers:

  1. Karlis Lasmanis (Riga) 38 pts
  2. Ondrej Siska (Humpolec Bernard) 35 pts
  3. Ivan Popovic (Belgrade) 34 pts
  4. Roman Zachrla (Humpolec Bernard) 32 pts
  5. Ivan Rasetina (Split Statist) 30 pts

Source: www.fiba.basketball
Photo: Goran Stanzl/PIXSELL

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No stopping Riga at Nanjing 3×3 Challenger

NANJING – Riga (LAT) won the Nanjing 3×3 Challenger after defeating Moscow Inanomo (RUS) in the final in Nanjing, China on April 21-22, 2018.

Riga had a perfect run in the old capital of China, winning all 5 games before the 10-minute limit, by an average of more than 8 points.

Their campaign ended the same it started: with a convincing win (21-12 in the final) against Moscow Inanomo, who went all the way from the qualifying draw to the final, with wins against the number 13 (Ulaanbaatar, MGL) and the number 1 team in the world (Novi Sad, SRB).

Both Riga stars Karlis Lasmanis and Nauris Miezis scored 28 points in 5 games but it was the latter, who was voted MVP of the tournament.

Riga confirmed their outstanding start in 2018: with the exception of the Goyang Challenger last week (where they finished 4th), they won 5 titles in 5 tournaments so far this year.

Last season Riga won 3 Challengers but have yet to reach the title game of a World Tour event.

The Nanjing 3×3 Challenger is a direct qualifier to the FIBA 3×3 World Tour Chengdu Masters. The Latvian team however already had secured a spot in China thanks to their FIBA 3×3 Team Ranking. One good reason to come to Nanjing though: they took home 10,000 USD in prize money.

The fact Riga had already qualified means both Moscow Inanomo and third-place Ulaanbaatar will join them in Chengdu on September 29-30, 2018.

Both teams are relatively new on the professional circuit. Moscow will make their World Tour debut this year while Ulaanbaatar celebrated their only previous World Tour appearance with a semi-final finish at the Utsunomiya Masters last year.

The 4 Ulaanbaatar players now switch their attention to national team 3×3 basketball. They will try to defend Mongolia’s title at the FIBA 3×3 Asia Cup in Shenzhen, China on April 27-May 1.

A total of 16 teams from 9 different countries played in Nanjing, including 6 of the Top 20 teams in the world: Novi Sad (SRB, #1), Piran (SLO, #4), Riga (LAT, #6), Ulaanbaatar (MGL, #13), Humpolec Bernard (#CZE, 16) and Split Statist (CRO, #18).

Final standings

  1. Riga (LAT)
  2. Moscow Inanomo (RUS)
  3. Ulaanbaatar (MGL)
  4. Split Statist (CRO)
  5. Novi Sad (SRB)

Source: www.fiba.basketball
Photo: www.fiba.basketball