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Vietnamese basketball team return to Asian tournament after 57 years

By Hoang Nguyen   October 15, 2022 | 04:05 pm PT
Vietnamese basketball team return to Asian tournament after 57 years
Nguyen Huynh Phu Vinh, a key player of Vietnam national basketball team, plays for Saigon Heat in the 2022 VBA. Photo by Vietnam Basketball Association
Vietnam will play the pre-qualifiers of 2025 FIBA Asia in Mongolia next month, the first time for the national team after 57 years.

The last time Vietnamese basketball competed at the FIBA Asia was in 1965. After recent success at regional competitions, the national team will return to one of the most prestigious basketball tournaments in Asia.

The pre-qualifiers of 2025 FIBA Asia will have two rounds. The teams here will be divided into four groups based on their regions. West Asian teams will be in group A and B while East Asians teams are in group C and D.

In the first round, the teams in each group will play in a round-robin format, with the top three teams advancing to the second round. In the next round, the three advancing teams from each group A and B will be put into group E, while the winning teams of group C and D will be merged into group F.

Teams in group E and F will continue to play in a round-robin format. The top four teams in each group will advance to the 2025 FIBA Asia Cup 2025 qualifiers along with 16 other teams that have entered directly.

In the first pre-qualifying round, Vietnam are in group D, along with Thailand, Malaysia, Mongolia and Tahiti. To advance to the second round, Vietnam must finish third at least.

This is a big challenge because Thailand and Malaysia are both familiar with the pre-qualifiers, while Tahiti are ranking the highest in the world (93rd). Only hosts Mongolia have never participated in the tournament. If Vietnam can pass the first round, they will compete with Guam, Singapore or Hong Kong in the second.

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