The FIBA 3x3 Olympic qualifying tournament, which was scheduled to be held in Bengaluru, will now take place in Graz (Austria) in May next year, FIBA announced on Tuesday.
The decision to take the tournament out of Bengaluru means India loses its host spot in the field, thereby putting paid to hopes of qualifying for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. The spots which were occupied by the Indian men’s and women’s team - both were placed in Group ‘D’ have now been taken by new host Austria.
Basketball Federation of India Secretary-General Chander Mukhi Sharma stated that COVID-19-related concerns forced FIBA to take the decision. “COVID-19 cases are on the rise in India. It is tough to host a sports tournament in these circumstances. The government also has strict rules when it comes to conducting sports events distancing, compulsory quarantine, no spectators and so on. We have to strictly adhere to the government rules, and therefore had no choice but to forgo our hosting rights,” Chander told Sportstar .
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