MONTHS of intense preparations now all comes down to this – Decision Day for the International Basketball Federation or FIBA.
This morning in Geneva ( 8 p.m. Manila Time), the FIBA Central Board will vote, which among the two finalists – the Philippine-led consortium with Japan and Indonesia and the two-country bid of Argentina and Uruguay – will host the 2023 FIBA World Cup.
The two finalists will make their final pitch before the FIBA Central Board with the first consortium scheduled to deliver its remarks at 10:30 a.m. The other bidder will be called in next for its 20-minute presentation.
Then, the Central Board will take a break and by 1 p.m. (8 p.m., Manila time), the decision will be announced.
Speakers from the three countries will be led by SBP Chairman Emeritus Manuel V. Pangilinan. After a 10-minute question-and-answer portion, Pangilinan will return to the stage for his final remarks.
Argentina and Uruguay will make their presentation before noontime. No live streaming will be available. Presentations may be made in English or Spanish with FIBA providing simultaneous translations.
SBP executive director Sonny Barrios said the consortium’s bid has three central principles–simplicity, diversity and intensity.
“The bid from the consortium offers FIBA an exciting opportunity to bring the sport’s pinnacle event to the fastest growing region in the world where our combined population of over 500 million is ready to embrace the sport of basketball, where we will work with FIBA to realize the sport’s vision to make basketball the most popular sports community–to have more people playing in more places, more often,” he said.
Pangilinan said he’s not interested in bidding for the 2027 edition. So this is make or break.
“Here’s praying our country gets it,” he said. “It’s the single priceless legacy I could leave Philippine basketball.”
The Philippines, Indonesia and Japan have a strong chance of winning the joint bidding for the hosting rights of the 2023 FIBA World Cup.
“We have a chance of winning the bid. I feel personally that we have a strong chance. But of course, it’s 50-50,” said SBP president Al Panlilio.
The SBP plans to amp the social media noise level to worldwide proportions with the hashtag #playlouderin2023.
In their plans to the award the hosting of the 2023 World Cup, the FIBA is seeking to reach out to a bigger audience.
And Panlilio said that if the Philippines and its partners win the bid, they will have an audience reach of around 500 million people.
“And I think, that’s a compelling proposition that we have brought forward to the FIBA,” said Panlilio.
The Cup is the most prestigious international tournament in the sport of basketball.
It features the best 32 teams from 32 countries all over the world.
The 2023 tourney will also serve as the qualifying tournament for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France.