Rwanda confirmed as sole host for BAL 2020 tournament

Leave a comment / By: manifel / 01 September, 2020 07:41:10AM
Rwanda confirmed as sole host for BAL 2020 tournament

The inaugural Basketball Africa League (BAL) will take place in December this year.

The tournament, featuring Africa’s best basketball clubs, was initially scheduled to get underway in March in Dakar, Senegal, but it was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to a source – who spoke to this publication on condition of anonymity – within the organisation of the highly anticipated showpiece, revealed that the tournament will take place ‘most likely’ in the second week of December.

“A tentative timeline has been set, and Kigali has been confirmed as the host for the whole competition. Unless some changes happen in the coming days, the tournament is scheduled for December 5-20,” said the source.

The tournament’s inaugural season comprises 12 clubs from 12 different African countries.

Rwanda’s Patriots qualified for the continental competition after registering a stunning unbeaten record in the two-round qualifiers last year.

As per the initial plan, six cities across the continent were due to host regular season games before Kigali, Rwanda, hosts the post-season games – known as the final four.

However, with so much time lost due to the coronavirus crisis that hugely affected sports and international travel, the organisers, the source says, have voted in favour of hosting the entire tournament in one city.

“The NBA and FIBA have confidence in the country and the serious measures it has employed to contain the virus. [I believe] that it is why organisers decided to host the whole tournament in Rwanda.”

The BAL, a joint partnership between the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the National Basketball Association (NBA), is a professional league featuring 12 clubs from across Africa. It marks the NBA's first collaboration to operate a league outside North America.

NIKE and Jordan Brand are the exclusive outfitter of the new professional league.

Clubs comprising BAL 2020

Ferroviario de Maputo (Mozambique), GNBC (Madagascar), Rivers Hoopers (Nigeria), Petro de Luanda (Angola), AS Douanes (Senegal), AS Police (Mali), FAP (Cameroon), Union Sportive Monastir (Tunisia), AS Sale (Morocco), GSP (Algeria), Patriots (Rwanda) and Zamalek (Egypt).

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