Lithuania climbs 4 spots up in FIBA 3×3 world rankings

2021-04-02 16:04
Photo: FIBA 3x3

On Thursday, after a one year break, FIBA ​​3×3 world club and national rankings have been unfrozen, where Lithuania further improved its position.

As a country, Lithuania climbed from 10th to 6th place in the global men’s ranking. Serbia, USA, Russia, Slovenia and Latvia are in the top five. The higher Lithuania’s position in this ranking, the more chances there are to enter the world and European championships without qualifiers. The place in the ranking may also determine the direct path to the 2024 Olympic tournament, when it will be held in Paris.

Meanwhile, the name of Utena’s Juventus-Uniclub appeared in the club ranking for the first time. Starting last year in the trio basketball, the Utena team jumped straight to the 21st position and became the second team from Lithuania to reach such result.

The highest team ranking of Lithuanian teams is currently held by Šakiai “Gulbelė”, which ranks 6th and only Riga, Liman, Ubo, New York and Novi Sad teams are ahead.

Mindaugas Špokas, Secretary General of the Lithuanian Basketball Federation (LKF) and Rolandas Skaisgirys, the founder of the 3×3 Basketball Association, were pleased with the improved positions, and mentioned the development of women’s trio basketball as one of the future goals.

“We are pleased with such a rapid move forward,” said Mindaugas Špokas. – We hope that all this progress will turn into the fact that for the first time in history we will participate in the Olympics as a 3×3 national team. The more teams play, the more points it generates for Lithuania as a country. It shows purposeful work and implies that things are done in the right direction.

The desire is not to stop, it is necessary to complete the Olympic cycle, and then the work will need to be extended, maintained. Sometimes this is even harder to do. The strategy of the association bears results. Another goal is to develop women’s 3×3 basketball as well. If this could be achieved with men, the same should be done for women’s basketball.”

“In the club ranking we must have 3-4 strong teams, which would be within Top30 or even Top20. Then, as a country, we will be in the Top3 in the world. When the Lithuanian championship opens, we will develop 3-4, and maybe even 5 top level teams. In two years, we have improved from 36th to 6th place in this ranking. If we manage to make a strong women’s team this year, then we will improve in the combined ranking – men and women – where we are in the 33rd place at the moment. We are moving towards it purposefully,” – said Rolandas Skaisgirys.