2010 Jones Cup basketball tourney to begin

Four local teams are among 11 men’s and women’s basketball teams competing in the 2010 R. William Jones Cup International Invitational Basketball Tournament, Taiwan’s top international hoop event, from July 14-20 in Taipei.

Taiwan is fielding a national team and a university all-star team in both the men’s and women’s competitions in the tournament, which will be played in Sinjhuang Stadium, Taipei County, with the aim of providing young players with more experience in international competitions.

Iran will be defending its title in the men’s group, which will be played in a single round robin. Yuta Tabuse, a 173-cm point guard who appeared in four games with the Phoenix Suns of the U.S. National Basketball Association as the first Japanese player in the league, is regarded as one of the most high-profile players in the tournament.

The other men’s teams are the Townsville Crocodiles of Australia’s National Basketball League, the Lebanon national team and the Philippines national team.

In addition to the two host women’s teams, the Shinsegae Coolcats of the Women’s Korean Basketball League and the Kazakhstan national team will compete in the women’s competition. The four teams will play a cross-over semifinal after a single round robin preliminary round.

The Taiwanese men’s national team is scheduled to meet the Townsville Crocodiles in its opening game Wednesday, while the women’s national team will meet the Kazakhstan national team Thursday.

The Jones Cup started in 1977 as an invitational tourney with national teams, club teams and university teams mainly from the Asian region. It was named after Renato William Jones, one of the founders and former secretary-general of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA).

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