August 17, 2019

Om Prakash Sr.: Hoopistani Indian Basketball Hall of Fame


Om Prakash Sr., who represented Team India and Services in the 70s/80s, is today's induction into the Hoopistani Indian Basketball Hall of Fame.
Photo courtesy: punjabbasketball.org

In 1979, he received one of the highest civil honours in the nation for sport, the Arjuna Award.

Click here for more of the Hoopistani Indian Basketball Hall of Fame.

August 16, 2019

Punjab Police miss out on 2019 FIBA Asia Champions Cup after East Asia Qualifiers in Bangkok


Usually, India's best 'club' team gets an opportunity to play in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup, the tournament's biggest international club basketball tournament, bringing together the champions from every country. This time, however, FIBA changed the format to include qualifying rounds to determine the 'final 8' for the FIBA Asia CC. India's Federation Cup champions - Punjab Police - represented the nation in the East Asia qualifiers this week in Bangkok. But a losing record saw them fall outside the top-2 qualifying spots and return home unfulfilled.

From August 13-15, Punjab Police took part in the 2019 FIBA Asia Champions Cup East Asia Qualifiers in Thailand, alongside SAFSA (Singapore), HiTech Bangkok City (Thailand), and Fubon Braves (Chinese Taipei). The teams played three round-robin games each, and the top two were chosen for the final-8 of the tournament.

Host team HiTech Bangkok City and Fubon Braves assured their place in the FIBA Asia CC after winning their first two games. In their third matchup, against each other, Fubon squeezed past HiTech 77-76 to officially finish on top of the group.

Punjab Police featured an undermanned roster, where several of their top players like Amjyot Singh and Arshpreet Singh Bhullar weren't available because of their participation in season 2 of the 3x3BL in Punjab. They started their tournament with a crushing loss to Fubon, 100-56. Punjab's Rajvir Singh had a game high 23 points, but it wouldn't be enough as he got little support from his teammates. Fubon were led by Weir-Chern Liu (18) in the win.

Game 2 was an even weaker performance by Punjab Police, against the hosts, HiTech. Rajvir Singh was again the central force for Punjab, with 26 points on a highly-inefficient 35 shots. For HiTech, Nakorn Jaisanuk scored a team-high 18 to lead his team to a 116-54 win.

Punjab did manage to end matters on a positive note in their final game against Singapore's SAFSA. In a back-and-forth game that went down to the wire, Sukhdeep Dhillon (29) and Ranbir Singh Virdi (19) helped Punjab Police eke out a 81-78 victory. SAFSA were led by Leon Kwek (20) and Delvin Goh (19) in the loss.

With this win, Punjab Police ended the event with a 1-2 record at third place.

August 15, 2019

Indian Bank win 2019 PSG Trophy in Coimbatore


It was the second basketball trip this year for the Indian Bank side to Coimbatore. And for the second time, the journey ended with victory.

After securing the 54th Nachimuthu Gounder Cup in Coimbatore earlier this year, Indian Bank (Chennai) returned to the city in Tamil Nadu and bagged first place in the 2019 PSG Trophy on Tuesday, August 13 at the PSG Sports Club. The prestigious invitational basketball tournament was held between eight teams from around the country from August 9-13, 2019.

Indian Bank secured the title win a 79-61 victory over Indian Army (Delhi) in the final on Tuesday. Hari Ram of Indian Bank scored 29 points to lead his squad to the win.

KSEB (Thiruvanathapuram) defeated Indian Air Force (Delhi) 76-73 and secured third place, led by Jishnu G Nair 19. Ajay Hooda scored 19 for Air Force in the loss.

Eight teams took part in this five-day event: Indian Bank (Chennai), Indian Army (Delhi), Indian Air Force (Delhi), KSEB (Thiruvanathapuram), RCF (Kapurthala), Indian Navy (Lonavala), Customs (Chennai), and last year's winners, Income Tax (Chennai).

Hari Ram of Indian Bank was rewarded the tournament's Best Player award.

PSG Institutions Managing Trustee L. Gopalakrishnan presided the prize giving ceremony and City police commissioner Sumit Sharan gave away the prizes. The winning team earned Rs. 1 lakh, the runners-up Rs. 50,000, and third place received Rs. 25,000.

August 14, 2019

Basketball Without Borders Asia Camp in Tokyo begins today with four Indian players


64 best young basketball prospects - boys and girls - from around Asia and Oceania will attend the 2019 Basketball Without Borders Asia Camp, set to be held in Tokyo, Japan, from August 14-17. Organised together by FIBA and the NBA, the camp will feature several current/former NBA/WNBA players and coaches.

Four Indian players have been invited to this edition of the camp: Siya Deodhar (Nagpur), Amaan Sandhu (Mohali), Harsimran Kaur (Jalandhar) and Arvinder Singh (Barnala). This is the second invited for Deodhar and Sandhu for the BWB Asia Camp, after last year's event that was held in home grounds in Greater Noida's NBA Academy India.

NBA/WNBA players/coaches leading this camp will include: Sam Cassell, Kevon Looney (Golden State Warriors), Robin Lopez (Milwaukee Bucks) Yuta Tabuse (formerly of the Phoenix Suns; Japan), Ashley Battle, Allison Feaster, Yolanda Moore, Pat Delany (Orlando Magic), Bryan Gates (Minnesota Timberwolves), Antonio Lang (Cleveland Cavaliers) and Wes Unseld Jr. (Denver Nuggets). Patrick Hunt (President of the World Association of Basketball Coaches; Australia) will be the camp director and Jeff Tanaka (Chicago Bulls) will serve as the camp’s athletic trainer.

Last year's India's Sanjana Ramesh won the girls' MVP honours at the 2018 BWB Asia Camp in India.

August 13, 2019

Punjab Police participates in Road to Final 8 - East Asia qualifying round for 2019 FIBA Asia Champions Cup


The 2019 FIBA Asia Champions Cup is a tournament that will involve the top club sides from all around the continent. From India, the competitor is determined by the previous winner of the Federation Cup, which was Punjab Police. But before the squad can step out for the main tournament and be a part of the 'Final 8', they will have to win the East Asia qualifying round in Bangkok, set to be held from August 13-15.

Punjab Police will take part in this qualifying round alongside SAFSA (Singapore), HiTech Bangkok City (Thailand), and Fubon Braves (Chinese Taipei). The teams will play in single-round robin format from August 13-15. The top two teams will claim their tickets to the FIBA Asia Champions Cup 2019 to join complete the cast of 8 elite professional basketball clubs in Asia.

Punjab Police Roster
  • Arshpreet Singh Bhullar
  • Rajvir Singh
  • Sukhdeep Pal Singh Dhillon
  • Varinder Singh Atwal
  • Rishab Jangra
  • Harwinder Preet Singh
  • Nitish Kumar Sharma
  • Ranbir Singh Virdi
  • Taranpreet Singh
  • Gurjinder Singh

Punjab Police Schedule
  • August 13 - Fubon Braves vs. Punjab Police
  • August 14 - Punjab Police vs. HiTech Bangkok City
  • August 15 - SAFSA vs. Punjab Police

Punjab Police are missing one major star from their roster at this event: Amjyot Singh, who is currently playing in the 3x3BL in Punjab. The team lost their first game by 100-56 to Fubon Braves, and desperately need to notch wins in the next two contests to have a chance for the Final 8 of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup.

August 12, 2019

Central Girls and West Boys win the 2019 Jr. NBA Global Championship; India knocked out early


Two teams from the USA - Central (Girls) and West (Boys) won the 2019 Jr. NBA Global Championship on Sunday, at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort. This was the second edition of this event, which featured top 13-14 year-old teams from the USA and around the world, including India. For the second year in a row, both the winners were American; for Central (Girls), it was a second consecutive title.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, three-time NBA Champion and Jr. NBA Global Championship Ambassador Dwyane Wade and New Orleans Pelicans Vice President of Basketball Operations/Team Development and former WNBA All-Star Swin Cash presented the winning teams with trophies in postgame ceremonies. The global youth basketball tournament took place from August 6-11 and featured 32 boys and girls teams from around the world. Overall, 15,000 players from 75 countries participated across Jr. NBA Global Championship regional competitions.

The Central girls team, from Kansas City, Missouri, finished the week with a 7-0 record. The team, which defeated the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and West to advance to the Global Championship final, was led by returning champion S’mya Nichols and guards Chloe Clardy, Jada Williams and Kiara Smith, who scored a combined 43 points in the final win over Canada, 72-35.

The West boys team, from Los Angeles, went 2-1 in pool play before winning three straight games in bracket play, including victories over the Northwest, Central and the previously undefeated Southeast, to advance to the Global Championship final. West guard Tyler Rolison recorded a team-high 21 points and 12 rebounds, and Quinton Webb, Issac Martinez and Taj DeGourville combined for 39 points in Sunday's final victory over Africa, 70-61.

Prior to the championship games, former NBA star Grant Hill hosted an awards ceremony with other dignitaries, handing out awards representing the Jr. NBA’s four core values: Determination, Respect, Teamwork and Community.

India's boys and girls teams - comprising of the top performers of the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA programme - also took part in this tournament for the second straight year. Although both teams were knocked out in the Quarter-Final stage of the International Bracket, India's boys put up an impressive show, winning one big game in overtime and nearly upsetting Canada in the knockouts. For India, young stars Lokendra Singh and Harsh Dagar made a name for themselves with some big performances. The top performer for India's girls team was Muskan Singh.

India's Results

Boys
  • India bt. Latin America 73-76 OT
  • Africa bt. India 63-21
  • Europe and Middle East bt. India 52-41
  • International Quarter-Final: Canada bt. India 64-56 OT
  • Mid Atlantic bt. India 79-26

Girls
  • Latin America bt. India 54-21
  • Africa bt. India 57-36
  • Europe and Middle East bt. India 62-23
  • International Quarter-Final: Canada bt. India 65-26 OT
  • Northeast bt. India 69-47

Hoopdarshan Episode 82: Amjyot Singh on G-League, Indian Basketball Suspension, and 3x3BL


The top player in Indian Basketball - Amjyot Singh - joins Hoopdarshan in Episode 82 to discuss his suspension from India's national team, his experiences playing in the NBA G-League, taking part in the 3x3BL in Punjab this season, and rating Gurudwara langar food. In addition, co-hosts Kaushik Lakshman and Karan Madhok catch up on all the happenings from the Indian basketball universe.

Amjyot Singh is one of the most accomplished Indian basketball players. Hailing from Chandigarh, he has played for and captained India's national team in several important tournaments. He has played professionally in the NBA's G-League for the OKC Blue and the Wisconsin Herd, as well as the D-League and BJ Summer League in Japan. Singh is one of the nation's top 3x3 players as well, starring in numerous international events for his clubs.



Hoopdarshan is the truest voice of Indian basketball, and since we're such hopeless fans of the game, it will become the voice of everything basketball related we love, from the NBA to international hoops, too. On every episode of Hoopdarshan, we will be inviting a special guest to interview or chat to about a variety of topics. With expert insight from some of the brightest and most-involved people in the world of Indian basketball, we hope to bring this conversation to a many more interested fans, players, and followers of the game.

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