(Toronto, ON) The FIBA Central Board announced today that Athens,
Greece was awarded the host city for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament
for Men. Canada Basketball’s Senior Men’s National Team will join 11
other FIBA countries in this tournament, taking place from July 14 –
20, 2008 at OAKA Sports Arena in Maroussi


This 12-team FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament will feature the following participants:  Brazil, Cape Verde, Canada, Cameroon, Croatia, Germany, Greece, Korea, Lebanon, New Zealand, Puerto Rico and Slovenia.  These countries will be competing for the three remaining berths in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

“We are excited about the opportunity to qualify for the 2008 Olympics,” said Canada Basketball’s Executive Director, Wayne Parrish.   “Last year’s successful finish in the FIBA Americas was the first step in Team Canada’s journey to qualify for the Olympics for the first time since 2000."

Canada’s Senior Men’s Team qualified for the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament by finishing in fifth place at the 10-team 2007 FIBA Americas Championships in Las Vegas, NV from August 22 – September 2, 2007. 

“Over the last few years our guys have been gearing for 2008,” said Leo Rautins, Head Coach of Canada Basketball’s Senior Men’s Team.  “Last year’s finish was the first step, and we are thrilled for the opportunity to go to Athens to complete the process. We currently have athletes competing in nine different countries around the world, honing their skills internationally to come together next summer and fight for an Olympic berth.”

The formal draw to determine the four groups for the tournament will take place on January 31, 2008 in Athens, Greece.

Rautins is eager to generate some interest and build national pride around the Senior Men’s Team. 

“I am planning to head up to ‘The Danforth’ (Toronto’s Greek community) as soon as possible to cultivate Canadian-Greek relations.  I recognize the passion the Greek community holds for their heritage and I’d like to tap into their enthusiasm as Canadians as well.” 

The system for the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament for Men will be as follows:


Preliminary Round:

The 12 participating teams will be divided into four groups (A, B, C and D) of three teams each. Each team will play all the other teams in its own group. The teams placed 1st and 2nd in each group will play in the Quarter-Finals; the teams placed 3rd in each group will go home. A total of 12 games will be played in the Preliminary Round.


Game 13: A1 vs. B2

Game 14: B1 vs. A2

Game 15: C1 vs. D2

Game 16: D1 vs. C2


Game 17: Winner 13 vs. Winner 15

Game 18: Winner 14 vs. Winner 16

The two winners will qualify for the Olympic Games. The two losers will play in the Finals the game for the 3rd place (Game 19 below) for one remaining qualifying place.


Game 19: Loser 17 vs. Loser 18

About Canada Basketball

Canada Basketball (www.basketball.ca) is a private, not-for-profit corporation that is committed to the growth of the sport in Canada.  Just as important, Canada Basketball is focused on the development and preparation of Canada’s national teams for the Olympic; Pan American and FISU Games as well as the World Championships.  The aspiration of Canada Basketball is to instill the pride, commitment, passion and respect that Canadians personify into the development of basketball across the country and internationally. 


About FIBA

FIBA (www.fiba.com), the world governing body for basketball, is an independent association formed by 213 National Federations of basketball throughout the world. It is recognized as the sole competent authority in basketball by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Its main upcoming events are the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments for Men and Women (to take place in the summer of 2008) that will decide the final berths for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games and the FIBA World Championships for Men and Women, held every four years. The 2010 FIBA World Championship will be played in Turkey.

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