Nine teams ready for Olympics

Most of us (here in Europe at least) followed the Eurobasket in Lithuania. A great championships with high level of competition. Spain won against France in the Gold Medal game and Russia clinched the Bronze medal. In my previous article i guessed that Lithuania would be the fourth team in the semifinal but F.Y.R of Macedonia chocked “everyone” and won an exiting game. Even Spain had some issues with the Balkan team in the semifinal where the game was even for about 25 minutes before Spain got a grip of the game.

After the final in FIBA Asia today the five continental FIBA Championships of 2011 have finished. This means the direct qualified teams for next year’s Olympics in London have been decided. The Olympic Tournament is the toughest one to get a ticket to because only 12 teams participate compared to 24 teams in the FIBA World Championship. Basketball is a huge sport in the world which can be seen at this picture of how the teams qualifies to London. From Europe and from America two teams qualify directly and from Africa, Asia and Oceania only one team can book a ticket to London.

The qualified teams are:

  • FIBA World (2010) winner: USA
  • Host of Olympics: Great Britain
  • Eurobasket: Spain and France
  • FIBA America: Argentina and Brasil
  • FIBA Africa: Tunisia
  • FIBA Oceania: Australia
  • FIBA Asia: China

The following teams have qualified for the Olympic Qualification Tournament which contains of 12 teams fighting for the last 3 spots:

  • Eurobasket: Russia, F.Y.R.of Macedonia, Lithuania and Greece
  • FIBA America: Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Venezuela
  • FIBA Africa: Angola and Nigeria
  • FIBA Asia: Jordan and Korea
  • FIBA Oceania: New Zealand

The conditions vary a lot when comparing the different continental championships. In Europe the competition is enormous, or what do you say about last year’s runner’s up in the World Championships – Turkey, the best European team last summer. They didn’t even reach the quarterfinal and had to settle for a 11th place. Then we can glance at FIBA Oceania where only two teams participated – Australia and New Zealand – one goes to London and one has a second chance in the Olympic Qualification.

The place and host of the Qualifying round has not yet been decided but it will for sure be an interesting and high level competition. I would guess the Europeans Teams are slightly in favor for at least two of the three spots in my opinion. But we have to wait for another article later on looking into this.

This means that the National Teams season’s in the world (Men’s basketball at least) are finished and the eyes are at the club competitions. This week the qualifying rounds for the European club competitions starts. Here in Sweden in Norrköping the home team will play Oostende for a place in EuroCup on tuesday. Next weekend the Euroleague qualifying tournaments take place – 8 teams fight for one spot in Vilnius and 8 other teams fight for the other spot in Charleroi. More basketball in Lithuania and Vilnius – the question is if Lietuvas Rytas will have enough home crowd support to take the Euroleauge spot?

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