Living up to their reputation, the reigning champions Gurugram Masters went 4-0 en route to start their 3BL Season 3 title defence on a winning note.

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Facing fellow Pool A league rival Bangalore Machas for the second straight game in the finals, the Masters pulled away to a 21-12 win. This was an almost identical scoreline to their Pool stage win against the Machas, when they won 22-12.

The final one sided scoreline belied a neck-and-neck start. The teams were tied at 7-7, before Masters built up a 15-9 lead that would prove to be the difference.

Gurugram Masters’ Marcus James Hammonds II (from USA) was declared the Most Valuable Player (MVP) for Day 1.

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Meanwhile, home town team, Chandigarh Beasts, missing its key India player Amjyot Singh Gill, found the going hard, getting knocked out in the pool stages itself.

3BL Players Return to Action after long COVID hiatus

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Key players from various teams spoke about the opportunity of participating in 3BL, after a long COVID-induced break:

“It was not an easy game. But it was the first game so were anxious. We will improve for sure,” said Carlos Martinez, Mumbai Heroes’ Spanish player, after their opening Pool B win against Hyderabad Ballers.

“It was a great game and great platform to play here. It feels amazing. Our team played really well. We are just hoping to continue the flow,” said Arvind Arumugam from Bangalore Machas after their first Pool A victory over home team Chandigarh Beasts.

“I want to thank 3BL and Commissioner Rohit Bakshi for giving players like myself a platform to do what we do. We have been waiting so long (after the COVID induced break), it feels amazing [to be back on court],” said Inderbir Singh Gill of defending champion Gurugram Masters.

Commemorating International Women’s Day

Earlier in the afternoon, prior to the start of the games, 3BL Director Mrs Prerna Sharma highlighted the occasion of International Women’s Day. “I would talk about talent. Not ‘women’s’ or ‘men’s’ talent. I would like to call my players, ‘players’. Not ‘women’s players’ or ‘men’s players’.” Specifically addressing the participating women’s players, Mrs Prerna Sharma added, “Many girls are looking forward to become like you, like Anmol(preet Kaur), Raspreet (Sidhu), Stephy (Nixon) and Ariadna (Geli Perez). The point is becoming a better human being and a better player, more than anything else.”

Prior to the Men’s Finals, a Women’s All-Star exhibition game was held between specially created teams ‘Shooting Strees’ and ‘Prima Donnas’. Spanish streetballer Ariadna Geli Perez, the first foreign player in 3BL Women’s League history, shone bright, leading Shooting Strees to a 11-9 win.

Day 1 (8/3/2022) {Men’s Conference A} Results

Knockout Rounds

  • Finals: Gurugram Masters bt Bangalore Machas 21-12
  • Semifinals (in chronological order)
    • Gurugram Masters bt Goa Snipers 18-15
    • Bangalore Machas bt Mumbai Heroes 21-17

 

League Rounds (in chronological order)

  • Pool A: Gurugram Masters bt Chandigarh Beasts 21-11
  • Pool B: Mumbai Heroes bt Hyderabad Ballers 15-13
  • Pool A: Bangalore Machas bt Chandigarh Beasts 18-15
  • Pool B: Goa Snipers bt Hyderabad Ballers 21-13
  • Pool A: Gurugram Masters bt Bangalore Machas 22-11
  • Pool B: Mumbai Heroes bt Goa Snipers 21-15

 

All results, team lists, pools and schedule can be accessed on the FIBA 3×3 website here.

Re-live all the Day 1 action here:

About 3×3 Pro Basketball League (‘3BL’) Season 3

3BL is India’s only Basketball Federation of India (BFI) and International Basketball Federation (FIBA) backed 3×3 Pro Basketball League. The third season of the League is underway in Chandigarh, between 8-21 March 2022, and will take place over six two-day rounds.

There are 12 participating men’s teams and 6 women’s teams. While this is the third season for the Men’s League, it is the second season for the Women’s League.

The men’s teams have been divided into two conferences:

Conference A: Gurugram Masters, Chandigarh Beasts, Bangalore Machas, Goa Snipers, Mumbai Heroes, Hyderabad Ballers

Conference B: Delhi Hoopers, Aizawl Legends, Kolkata Warriors, Chennai Icon, Ahmedabad Wingers, Lucknow Ligers

At the end of every preliminary round, Men’s Conference A & B winners will be announced, while an overall women’s winner will be announced.

In the sixth and final round, the separate conferences in the men’s section will be done away with, and the winner of this round will be crowned the Season Champion. Meanwhile, in the women’s section, the winner of the sixth round will be named the Season winner.

Team Ekalavyas
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