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Jordan women’s basketball squad plays its 3rd FIBA Asia Cup

Men’s team starts final World Cup preparations

By Aline Bannayan - Aug 12,2023 - Last updated at Aug 12,2023

AMMAN — Jordan’s senior women’s basketball team start its quest at the Women’s FIBA Asia Cup on Sunday at the competition hosted by Thailand from August 13-19.

Playing in Division B, Jordan is playing in Group B and will face hosts Thailand on Sunday before facing Sri Lanka and Kazakhstan. Group A includes Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia and Mongolia. Group leaders will automatically move to the semis while the second and third from the groups will play for a spot in the semis from which one team will be promoted to Division A in the 2025 edition.

It will be the third time for Jordan at the event, after they played in 1995 and 2021.

Jordan lately lost to Iran in four friendlies and beat the U19 Egyptian team in three other matches in preparation for the Asia Cup.

In 2021, the Kingdom hosted the Asia Cup Divisions A & B finishing second after Lebanon in Division B, marking the first time the FIBA Women’s Asia Cup 2021 Division A was held in an Arab country. Lebanon were promoted to Division A for the 2023 tournament in which they finished 7th with China taking top spot. 

Jordan’s first participation was 26 years ago in 1995 when the squad travelled to Shizuoka, Japan and won one match.

This summer, the Kingdom’s U-16 women’s basketball team finished 5th at the  FIBA U-16 Women’s Asian Championship as Jordan hosted Divisions A & B. The Philippines won Division B top spot and were promoted to Division A. 

Australia retained Division A title while Japan settled for  second and New Zealand for third followed by Chinese Taipei, Korea, China , Samoa and Syria. The top four teams qualified for the FIBA U-17 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2024 in Mexico.

Jordan hosted the FIBA U-16 Women’s Asian Championship for the second consecutive edition and their third time at the event. Last year, Jordan settled for 8th place while in 2013 they finished 11th.

Jordan’s U-16 boys team will also play the FIBA U-16 Asian Championship after they last participated in 2009.

In the FIBA U-18 Women’s Asian Championship, Jordan settled for 6th place in the latest edition in India. The top team in the tournament, Australia, moved to Division A. Jordan finished 8th in 1996, hosted the event in 2014 finishing 11th and were 6th in 2022.

Meanwhile, Jordan’s national men’s basketball team plays abroad in Georgia where they will also meet Iran and Montenegro from August 12-14 before they leave to China to also play South Sudan and Venezuela from August 18-22 ahead of the World Cup.

This week, Jordan hosted and beat Portugal, Angola and Mexico to win the title of the 11th King Abdullah Cup (The King’s Cup) with Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa cheering on the team ahead of the FIBA World Cup 2023 set to be held in the Philippines, Japan and Indonesia as of August 25.

Earlier, the team concluded two training camps playing friendlies in Portugal where they beat the Ivory Coast, and lost to the Czech Republic and hosts Portugal in close matches. They also played in Lithuania where they lost three matches to the hosts. They earlier held a training camp in Canada following matches in Greece and Lithuania in June.

Jordan qualified to the World Cup finals for the second consecutive and third overall time. The squad joins the 32-country FIBA World Cup 2023 field playing in Group C where wasset to meet Greece on August 26, before facing New Zealand on August 28, then playing 2010 and 2014 champs the United States on August 30 in matches set for Manila, the Philippines.

The basketball squad was the first and only Jordanian team to reach a World Cup in a team sport alongside the junior men’s team in 1995. Jordan has now reached the FIBA Basketball World Cup - the world’s premier basketball competition three times - in 2010, 2019 and 2023.  At the 2010 World Cup Jordan finished 23rd among 24 countries after losing five matches. In 2019, Jordan managed a win over Senegal  to finish 28th among 32 teams.

The tournament serves as a qualifier for the 2024 Summer Olympics, where the top two teams from each of the Americas and Europe, and the top team from each of Africa, Asia and Oceania, will qualify alongside the tournament’s host France.

Jordan’s qualifying journey had its ups and downs as the team also made it to the FIBA Asia Cup semis for the first time since 2011, but eventually settled for fourth place.

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