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- Dubai 04:54 06:08 12:11 15:33 18:08 19:22
The FIBA West Asia Super League (WASL), an international basketball league organised by FIBA Asia, unveiled its trophy ahead of its highly-anticipated Final 8 contest. The tournament will see a fierce contest between the top three teams from WASL West Asia and WASL Gulf leagues, in addition to the top team from India.
The unveiling of the trophy was held in front of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The pinnacle event of the West Asia Super League will be held at the Saeed bin Maktoum Gymnasium at the Shabab Al Ahli Club in Al Mamzar, Dubai from 9 to 17 June.
FIBA Regional Office-Asia Executive Director Hagop Khajirian, who attended the unveiling, expressed his immense pride at the organisation of the tournament, which he hopes will further spur the growth of Asian basketball.
"We are extremely proud to have finally unveiled the FIBA West Asia Super League trophy," he said. "We at the FIBA Regional Office-Asia are all about the growth of basketball, and this is symbolic of how much the game has thrived in the region. To have revealed this beautiful trophy here at the City of Gold that is Dubai couldn't be any more perfect," he added. "We cannot wait for the games to start."
Also present during the unveiling were the captains of the competing teams, which include Manama, Kuwait Club, Shabab Al Ahli – Dubai, Al Riyadi, Beirut Club, Gorgan, BC Astana, and the champion team of India.
The 55-centimetre trophy to be awarded to the FIBA West Asia Super League title winner features a sphere-shaped figure on top symbolising the globe, with the nations whose clubs are participating in the league represented in gold. Lines on the sphere pay homage to the lines found on the basketball. These represent the intricacies and technicalities of the game, as well as the precision and accuracy required to play the sport at a professional level. The ring located below the sphere represents the basketball rim, which symbolises the ultimate goal of the sport - to score points by shooting the ball through the hoop. The four columns that support the trophy represent the four Sub-Zones that make up FIBA WASL -- Central Asia, South Asia, Gulf and West Asia. Symbolic of support, the columns also represent the league's commitment to further promoting the sport in these areas.
The Final 8 teams are divided into two groups of four teams each, with the two best squads in each group advancing to the semi-finals. The third and fourth placers of each group by the end of the Group Phase will be eliminated. Victors of the semi-finals will figure in a winner-take-all final that will decide the first-ever WASL champions.
The hosting of the FIBA West Asia Super League further adds to Dubai’s growing status as a leading global sports destination. Key global sporting events that Dubai is hosting in June include the inaugural edition of the World Padel League to be held from 8 to 11 June, featuring 24 top-rated players from around the globe; the first edition of the Global Chess League, the world’s largest and first franchise-based chess league to be held from 21 June to 2 July; the IWBF Wheelchair Basketball World Championships to be held from 9 to 20 June; and the 2023 edition of the Dubai Esports and Games Festival (DEF) to be held from 21 to 25 June.
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