The International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) sanctioned tournament will see 12 teams from across the world competing at the tournament which runs from Sept 7-16 at the sports complex at PSU.
Drawn into two groups for the preliminary stages, Brazil, Spain, Turkey, Japan, France and Canada will compete in Group A, whilst in Group B the United States, Germany, Israel, Australia, South Africa and hosts Thailand will battle it out for a place in the next phase.
The top four teams from each group advance to the knockout stages of the quarter-finals, semi-finals and medal games.
The IWBF’s flagship event for junior male wheelchair basketball players will officially tip off at 4:30pm on Wednesday (Sept 7) when the United States play Germany.
The opening ceremony then takes place the following day at 1:30pm, closely followed by hosts Thailand taking on South Africa.
The Championship will culminate in the Final to be played at 3:30pm on Friday, Sept 16.
One team going into the tournament with high expectations is Australia. Otherwise known as the “Spinners”, the Aussies have a strong track record in international competition and regularly finish in the top four teams at the World Championship.
The 12-man squad features Lachlin Dalton, who is coming off the back of a gold medal victory in the Men’s Wheelchair 3×3 basketball at the Commonwealth Games earlier this month in Birmingham, UK.
The team will face some tough opposition, but Head Coach, Bradley Ness says the squad is up for the challenge.
“Israel, Turkey, Spain and Germany all have very good teams with a number of the athletes playing professionally in Europe. We are well prepared to face all challenges as we have been training together for the last four years,” he said.
“Our game plan is designed to apply pressure on the opposition for 40 minutes and together with the Aussie spirit of never say die, we are defiantly looking to be playing in the podium rounds.“
Ness will be joined by Assistant Coaches, Joshua Alison and Thomas Kyle.
The tournament was originally scheduled to take place last year in Chiba, Japan but was rescheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
It was then rescheduled to take place in Chiba between May 27 and June 4 this year although the Japanese Wheelchair Basketball Federation subsequently asked for it to be played elsewhere due to ongoing challenges with COVID-19 and restrictions on foreigners entering the country. The decision was then made to switch to Phuket.
Spectators are welcome and admission is free with no tickets required to attend. All games will also be streamed live and available on IWBF’s YouTube Channel.