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02 August 2017 | in Basketball 3x3, FISU, 3x3 World University League, World University League

Road to Xiamen 2017: Defending WUL champs and finalists eager for glory

When the curtains dropped at the 2016 finals, two teams basked in the championship limelight with McGill University winning the men’s side and Lithuanian Sport University taking the women’s crown. Both are coming back to Xiamen in 2017 to defend their World University League titles.

  

 

LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND – The university 3x3 Basketball world returns to the discipline’s capital city of Xiamen, China for the 3x3 FISU World University League finals from 14-17 September.

 

 

In the men’s and women’s tournaments 16 university teams each have qualified to try and take the World University League titles. These titles currently reside with 2016 World University League champs, Canada’s McGill University for the men and Lithuanian Sport University (Lithuania) for the women.

 

The World University League is helping bring 3x3 basketball - the most popular urban team sport on earth - onto university campuses everywhere 

With just over a month to go, it’s time to check in with the teams headed to Xiamen for the world university 3x3 basketball league title.

 

 

Up first are the likely contenders for the crown. On the men’s side this includes the only two teams to ever reach the finals, McGill University and Université Bordeaux of France.

 

 

It’s never smart to count out the home team, especially in university sports. Huaqiao University represents the host city to Xiamen and looks eager to improve upon their 9th place finishes in the 2015 and 2016 editions of the league championships.

 

 

On the women’s side, the Lithuanian Sports University will return to Xiamen as the World University 3x3 Basketball League title-holders. Last year’s second-place finishers, Canada’s University of Regina is sure to be in the mix of top teams again in 2017.

 

 

For the home team, locals university sport fans can cheer for Xiamen University of Technology, making them a relatively unknown, but likely outsider in the competition.

 

 

 

The Men’s 2016 Finalists Return to the League Championships Again in 2017

 

 

McGill University is a public research university in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, dating back to the early 19th century. It is a world leading institution in many academic fields and offers degrees and diplomas in over 300 fields of study, with the highest average admission requirements in the country. The university’s alumni include not only Nobel laureates, astronauts, Canadian prime ministers, foreign leaders and ambassadors, Academy Award (Oscars), Grammy Award and Pulitzer Prize winners, as well as many Olympic medallists. Having reached the 2016 tournament by invitation, the Canadians did not shy away and blazed their trail all the way to the Gold medal, where they beat Université Bordeaux (FRA) 17-9.

 

 

The Université Bordeaux was originally established in 1441 being re-founded in 1896. It currently has over 52,000 students and 6,000 professors and staff in the humanities and social sciences, life sciences, health sciences and science and technology. It is the top 10 amongst French establishments that feature in the Shanghai Alternative Ranking published by the University Jiao Tong (China). In sports, notably 3x3 Basketball, this will be the team’s 3rd participation. They reached both the 2015 and 2016 League finals but unfortunately lost both times. In 2015 they narrowly lost 17-16 to UQAM (CAN) and in 2016 to McGill University, as mentioned above.

 

 

Amongst the Women’s Top Contenders for the 2017 Crown are the 2016 Finalists

 

 

In the women’s tournament, the title-holders are the Lithuanian Sports University, a university in Kaunas, Lithuania, that specializes in sports, physical activities and physiology. LSU is seen as an important centre of sports science in Lithuania, as a fosterer of physical education, sport values and traditions. Many top Lithuanian champions in athletics, basketball, handball, volleyball or football have come from LSU and are famous for their sports results. The institution alumni also include numerous Olympic medallists in athletics, basketball, sailing and rowing. This will be LSU’s 2nd participation at the 3x3 WUL. They qualified in 2016 by winning the 3x3 Basketball tournament at the European Universities Games.

 

The University of Regina is a public research university located in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. It was founded in 1911 and became an autonomous university again in 1974. It counts enrolment figures over 12,000 students. The institution is well-reputed for having a focus on experiential learning and offers 41 programs. Last year, the university was ranked as one of the top 150 universities under 50 years old worldwide. At the 3x3 FISU WUL, the University of Regina received a wildcard to participate in 2016 having lost the final 21-14 to LTU.

 

 

Representing the host city and country are two teams from Xiamen

 

 

Huaqiao University is a national university that was founded in 1960 for students of overseas Chinese backgrounds (Hong Kong, Taipei, Macau, Singapore) to pursue tertiary education in their ancestral homeland. The university has two campuses in the cities of Xiamen and Quanzhou. The University has 24,000 students, including 3,000 overseas students. Regarding sports, the men’s basketball team is a multiple winner of the China University Basketball Association tournaments. Now its focus has however turned to 3x3 with the university being arguably recognised as worldwide capital for university 3x3 basketball. This will be the 3rd participation at the WUL finals. In 2015 the host team finished 9th out of 12 teams, while in 2016 they repeated their 9th place, this time with 16 teams competing.

 

 

 

Xiamen University of Technology is a provincial public university that was founded in 1981, being originally known as Lujiang Industrial University. The university, which has three campuses, has over 21,000 domestic and foreign students and over 1,000 faculty members. It offers 63 undergraduate and graduate programs. This will be the university’s first participation at the 3x3 FISU World University League.

 

 

Next in the Road to Xiamen 2017, we will present more tournament rosters, from both the men’s and women’s brackets. Keep checking back in here as momentum – and information – for the 3x3 FISU World University League grows.

 

 

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