The National Basketball Association (NBA) selected Eight cagers from Nagpur to represent the West Zone team in the NBA National Championship. All these eight players from various schools will play in the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA National Finals scheduled to be held at the NBA India Academy courts of the Atlantis Sports Club, Jaypee Greens, Greater Noida, Delhi NCR from April 24 to 28.
The NBA Nationals is for school going players and 12 teams in both the boys and girls’ category from across the country will vie for honours. All these players were selected from the Regional Tryouts of the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA India program held at Pune last month. In that trials 14 Nagpur participated. In addition to the eight city cagers (four boys and four girls) three more players are also selected as stand-byes.
The eight players will reach Noida on April 24. After the arrival of teams, a day long practice session will be conducted on April 25 and the National championship games will be played from April 26 to 28. The NBA Coaches and scouts will shortlist players from the championship and the selected players will represent NBA India in the World Championship.
On April 29 and 30, the Selection Tryouts for Jr NBA World Championship will be conducted at the same venue for the shortlisted players.
For all the selected players the NBA will undertake the responsibilities of travelling expenses (by air), players’ lodging and boarding. This is for the first time that NBA, the organisers of the World’s Best Basketball League in America, selected Nagpur players for their National championship. These players were selected from NBA’s first comprehensive youth basketball initiative in Nagpur where they organized an inter-school tournament at the Nagpur University courts recently.
President of Nagpur District Basketball Association (NDBA) Sandip Joshi, Secretary Bhavesh Kuchanwar and all the members congratulated all these selected players and wished them luck for the National Championship. Secretary of the NDBA Bhavesh Kuchanwar said, “This is another big opportunity for our young players and we all wish them luck for the national championships. It is a moment of pride for our district that eight players are selected by the NBA coaches. The exposure that the NBA and their experienced coaches are providing at the grassroot level will only help our players to grow. The NBA national championship in Noida will also be a morale booster for these young players of Nagpur.”
Following Payers from Nagpur have been shortlisted Girls: Dhara Phate, Sameeksha Chandak (both BVM, Trimurti Nagar), Shomira Bidaye (Centre Point School, Katol Road) and Swati Wankhede (Saraswati Vidyalaya).
Boys: Hardik Mange (Somalwar School, Nikalas), Taaran Kakkad, Aditya Sharma (both Centre Point School, Dabha), Laksh Joshi (School of Scholars, Wanadongri).
Stand Byes: Swastika Datta (Delhi Public School, Kamptee Road), Avani Bhantia (all BVM, Trimurti Nagar), Parth Borkute (School of Scholars, Wanadongri).