Manila North shock the world on Day 1 of FIBA 3x3 World Tour Final
15 Oct 2015
ABU DHABI (2015 FIBA 3x3 World Tour) - Forced into a do-or-die situation, Manila North had the biggest upset of the tournament, defeating Team Doha (QAT) in front of a galvanised audience on the opening day of the 2015 FIBA 3x3 World Tour.
Some had left the previous night from Dubai, others arrived several hours before the first game: the entire Filipino community of the United Arab Emirates seem to have met just on the Corniche to support their very own Manila North team.
Things looked bleak for the squad in Pool D after they dropped their first game against Kranj, who had themselves lost to Doha but their star Calvin Abueva brought the crowd to its feet with 7 points and a 16-14 lead which sends the Qatari team home and send Manila North to the quarter-finals.
In Pool A, number one 3x3 player in the world Dusan Domovic Bulut lived up to his reputation and led all scorers on Day 1 with 20 points. His team Novi Sad Al Wahda kept things short with back-to-back wins before the 10-minute mark. Rio took an unexpected second place after defeating Vilnius (LTU) on a Douglas Motta two-pointer in the closing seconds of the game.
The 2013 FIBA 3x3 World Tour winners Ljubljana (SLO) topped Pool B after a difficult win against Denver (USA).
Three teams were tied with one win in Pool C, with Trbovlje (SLO) taking first place based on total points scored and NY Harlem joining them in the quarter-finals after a thrilling 21-19 win against the Slovenian team on an Edis Derdisevic power play.
Friday's schedule from 18.45 local time (GMT+2):
Kranj (SLO, 5)– Rio (BRA, 8) Trbovlje (SLO, 3) – Denver (USA, 10) Ljubljana (SLO, 2) – NY Harlem (USA, 11) Novi Sad Al Wahda (UAE, 1) – Manila North (PHI, 12)
Team Kolobrzeg high-flyer Piotr Renkiel windmilled his way to the final of the Dunk Contest and will get a chance to test his skills against the two best dunkers in the business Jordan ‘Mission Impossible’ Kilganon (Canada) and Rafal ‘Lipek’ Lipinski (Poland).
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