Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter

THE Basketball Union of Zimbabwe (Buz) has expressed gratitude to Bulawayo City Council (BCC) for granting them authority to stage the fourth edition of the Southern Africa 3X3 Under-18 basketball tournament at the City Hall car park in December.

The competition, will run from December 3-6.

Buz, which has started engaging potential partners , says hosting the event at the City Hall car park will draw lots of spectators, as it’s a central venue.

Ten countries, which include hosts Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa and Indian Ocean islanders Madagascar and Seychelles, have confirmed their participation in writing.

Zimbabwe won the last edition of the Under-18 competition dubbed “Three Lions 3X3 Southern Cup” held in Botswana last year.

The International Basketball Federation (Fiba) excluded regional powerhouses Angola and Mozambique from participating in the competition to give other countries a battling chance to clinch the series.

Buz president Joe Mujuru said: “It is huge support that the councillors sat and agreed to grant us permission to host an international competition right at the City Hall car park. We are excited with this vote of confidence as we continue engaging strategic partners so that Zimbabwe, particularly Bulawayo, stages a competition to remember.”

Bulawayo has in the last six years hosted major tournaments such as the AUSC Region 5 Under-20 Games in 2014, the Afro-Basket and African Games qualifiers in 2015 and the Zone Six Basketball Club Championships in 2018.

Buz rotates international competitions and in January Zimbabwe played host to Afro-Basket 2021 preliminaries staged in Harare. – @ZililoR