The inaugural season of 3X3 Indian National Basketball League (INBL) 2022 will be held from March 18 to May 29, the Basketball Federation of India announced on Thursday.
The INBL is to be conducted across 20 cities — Aizawl, Bengaluru, Bhavnagar, Bhilai, Chandigarh, Chennai, Cuttack, Delhi, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kangra, Kochi, Kolkata, Ludhiana, Lucknow, Mumbai, Panjim, Puducherry simultaneously in India.
FIBA 3×3 competitions will be held across four categories – Men, Women, U-18 Men and U-18 Women. The champions from each city will qualify to play the National Finals scheduled to be held at Bengaluru from May 27-29.
“The competitions in Men and Women are open to any player to form a team and participate and will comprise players above the age of 18. The Under-18 competitions will feature players born on or after 01.01.2004,” the governing body said in a statement.
The inaugural weekend of March 18-20 will see action in the BFI-INBL 3×3 Season 1 at Bengaluru (Sree Kanteerava Stadium (Outdoors) and the West Bengal Basketball Association courts in Kolkata.
More than 200 teams will be seen in action — 120 teams in Bengaluru and more than 90 teams in Kolkata. There will be action every weekend in at least in two cities and in three cities on certain weekends till the National Finals. The season will take a break from April 3 to10 due to the 71st Senior National Championships being conducted in Chennai.
“There is rich and unprecedented prize money for the top four teams in each category at the city level as the National Finals,” the statement further said.
“The Indian National Basketball League was formed in November last year by the BFI, to build awareness and popularity and to identify and develop thousands of promising basketball talent in the country.
The unique competition format that we have put together takes basketball to the grassroots. We are playing in 20 cities providing an opportunity for players in those cities to play right at their doorsteps and yet be a part of the FIBA 3×3 World Ranking system,” said Dr K Govindaraj, MLC, president, Basketball Federation of India.
“This is our first step and we are hoping it will take us all the way for India to qualify for the 2024 Olympics,” he added.