June 1, 2016

2016 SABA U18 Basketball Championship: India's Junior Men ready to defend South Asian basketball title in Dhaka

India has dominated basketball in the South Asia region. But success is never guaranteed, and to be the South Asian representative in Asia's biggest basketball championships, this success has to earned, not given. This week in Dhaka, India's Junior Men's squad will have a chance to earn their success all over again.

India's U18 Men are in Dhaka (Bangladesh) to participate in the two-day 2016 South Asian Basketball Association (SABA) U18 Championship for Men on Wednesday June 1st and Thursday June 2nd in Dhaka (Bangladesh). The tournament will feature four teams: India, hosts Bangladesh, reigning silver medalists Sri Lanka, and Nepal. The winner of the 2016 SABA U18 Championship will qualify for Asia's biggest junior basketball championship, the 24th FIBA Asia U18 Championship.

The tournament will be held in round-robin fashion over the two days, with each team playing three games to determine the champion.

India's roster was picked based on performances at last month's Junior National Basketball Championship in Puducherry. The initial 25 probables spent time in camp in Puducherry and played practice matches against Chennai's Sathyabama University and IOB in preparation. The final 12-man roster in Dhaka is being led by experienced head coach Jai Prakash Singh and rising young star Baladhaneshwar Poiyamozhi from Tamil Nadu.

Team India U18 roster for 2016 SABA U18 Championship
  • Gineeb Benny (Kerala)
  • Sahil (Haryana)
  • Mohammed Ali (Rajasthan)
  • Kalidass Singamuthu (Tamil Nadu)
  • Rachit (Delhi)
  • Muhammed Shiras Noushad (Kerala)
  • Daniel Richards Arthur Wilson (Tamil Nadu)
  • Hariram Raghupathy (Tamil Nadu)
  • Guruprasad Nayak Kukkundur (Karnataka)
  • Vishal Kumar Gupta (Uttar Pradesh)
  • Baladhaneshwar Poiyamozhi - Captain (Tamil Nadu)
  • Saqlain Jamir Sayyed (Maharashtra)
  • Head Coach: Jai Prakash Singh
  • Assistant Coach: Vinod Pazahmi Goutham

India’s Tournament Schedule - All Timings IST
  • India vs Bangladesh – 1st June, 07:30 AM
  • India vs Sri Lanka – 1st June, 02:30 PM
  • India vs Nepal – 2nd June, 07:30 AM

India are reigning champions of this tournament, after winning the 2014 SABA U18 Championship at home in Bengaluru. Another win this year will ensure India's return to the 2016 FIBA Asia U18 Championship, set to be held in Tehran (Iran) from July 15-24, 2016.

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