FIBA Oceania

01/31/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 01/31/2019 13:40

Antigua and Barbuda renew their court and commitment to basketball

ST. JOHN'S - In joint efforts, the Antigua and Barbuda Basketball Association (ABBA) and the Ministry of Sports rehabilitated the JSC Sports Complex. The remodeling works included cleaning and repairing the roof, seats and fence. The cement floor was replaced with a new rubber material that's more cushioned and resistant. The work done by an American enterprise included installing a new surface with Versa technology, that allows a better ball bounce, excellent traction and protects the players' joints. The court also portrays the national colors of the Antigua and Barbuda team (green and black), as well as the Association's official logo.

'Versa courts provide the perfect balance of performance and durability. Besides, it's the sports surface that requires the least amount of maintenance,' said recently elected ABBA President Kebra Nanton.

Antigua and Barbuda also inaugurated their interschool tournament for children that are in elementary and secondary school. During the ceremony, the Minister of Sports, Daryll Matthews, talked in his speech about the importance of sports in the professional and athletic development of the youth.

'Take a basketball when you have some free time, even if it is in the afternoon, after school, or in the weekend. Go to the court even if you're by yourself. Go to the court and shoot at the basket, because if you want to become a good ball player, if you want to benefit from everything that basketball has to offer, if you want to give yourself the opportunity of having a scholarship or represent Antigua and Barbuda in sports at a moment in time, you must understand that you have to dedicate a lot of time to it.'

ABBA had taken a big step forward by the end of 2018 after creating their first U-18 3x3 women's national team after a successful national qualifying tournament.

According to the Association's President, establishing this team has the purpose of 'developing the sport of basketball in Antigua and Barbuda and use it as a tool to empower today's youth with confidence, commitment and integrity. (It also) offers programs that promote a healthy lifestyle, stimulate moral character, develop self-discipline, cultivate a work ethic and create the necessary confidence to be successful.'

Antigua and Barbuda have been making great efforts to professionalize their National Basketball League, whose tournament began on January 20. As a result of these efforts, they received a private enterprise donation of two computers in order to tally real-time FIBA statistics during their second and third division national tournament games.