BFI set to launch Indian National Basketball League

The Indian National Basketball League will be played after the conclusion of the Senior Nationals in a home-and-away format.

Basketball

Representative Image: The league will not embrace the franchise model that many sports in India have adopted and also has no plans to rope in foreign players.   -  AP

The Basketball Federation of India (BFI) is set to launch the Indian National Basketball League, a competition featuring the nine best men’s and women’s teams at the Senior National Championship to be held in Indore from January 4 to 10.

At a media briefing here on Thursday, it was announced that the League will be played after the conclusion of the Senior Nationals in a home-and-away format. But it will not embrace the franchise model that many sports in India have adopted and also has no plans to rope in foreign players.

Headstart Arena India, a Punjab-based recreational, cultural and sporting activities company, which also has business interests in Australia, has been granted a five-year license by the BFI to run the competition and also help promote the 3x3 version of the game.

The BFI-INBL 3x3 project is already underway, with the pilot Bengaluru Open scheduled for this weekend. The initiative is slated to expand to other cities in the days ahead.

K. Govindaraj, BFI president, said the INBL’s aim was to provide players with competitive games “every second weekend” to improve their standards and look to qualify for competitions such as the Olympics and World Cups.

“At the top will be the high-quality league in the regular format, which will supplement strengthening the National team. And then we will have the pan-India city-based FIBA 3x3 competitions which will increase the participation and bring in new talent,” Govindaraj added.

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