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Smith hoping to see NMI team in FIBA Oceania youth caging - Jul 5, 2006


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FIBA Oceania secretary general Steve Smith is hoping that the NMI will send a team in next year’s FIBA Oceania Youth Tournament if Guam wins the bid for the hosting of the 20-and-under caging.
“Guam has submitted its bid to host next year’s FIBA Oceania Youth Tournament and I there’s a big chance that they might win,” Smith said.
Smith was on Saipan for more than a week to supervise the Micronesian Games basketball tournament. Before the Micro Games, the FIBA official talked to Variety and said he was a bit sad that the commonwealth did not make it to this year’s youth tournament.
“But I understand because it’s quite expensive to go to New Zealand. I just hope that when Guam hosts the tournament, CNMI will send a team there as it would not be that expensive to go to Guam,” Smith added.
Basketball Association of Northern Mariana Islands vice president Elias Rangamar said that although he is happy that Guam is likely to host the youth caging, he could not give BANMI’s commitment for next year’s tournament at this early.
Rangamar said that the BANMI board will be meeting next week and they might discuss the FIBA tournament along with the Pacific Games next year.
But Rangamar said that if the board decides to send a team to Guam for the 20-and-under caging sometime in October next year, the selection of the squad and the fundraising must start early.
This year’s FIBA Oceania Youth Tournament will be held in Waitakere, Henderson in Auckland from October 15 to 21.
The Saipan-based Northern Youth Basketball Association was supposed to compete in the New Zealand tournament, but financial constraints prevented the NYBA from participating in the youth caging.
Twenty-four teams were originally nominated for the tournament last year and after a few months, FIBA Oceania made a cut selecting only 16.
Smith said that last January, they made the final selection of eight teams. Making it to the list are Australia, New Caledonia, American Samoa, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Tahiti, Guam and host New Zealand.
The New Zealand Basketball Federation will shoulder only the accommodation and meal costs of each team.
Each squad is allowed to bring only 10 players, one coach, one manager and one referee.
(courtesy of Variety News)
  



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