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SBP, Chooks-to-Go launch 3x3 national program, aims to make it to Tokyo Olympics

By Kevin Estrada

QUEZON CITY -- With the aim of making it to the 2020 Summer Olympics, the Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas and Chooks-to-Go launched its national 3x3 program in a simple ceremony Tuesday aternoon.

The popularity of the small-sided aspect of the game grew accross the world, the country's hoops leaders are taking cue from the root of the game's humble beginnings, as the Philippines was the game's informal pioneer of the game more known as "tatluhan".

"3x3 basketball is always in our hearts," says Chooks owner Ronald Mascarinas. "This is the foundation of basketball in the Philippines."

SBP executive director Sonny Barrios echoes the ever-supportive Mascarinas, as the versatility of the short and quick 3-on-3 game can be played everywhere.

Barrios revealed that the national tour of the 3x3 will be part of the country's efforts in making it into Tokyo, with only seven out of the eight spots are up for grabs in various qualifying tilts accross the globe.

A huge core of the program will involve searching for untapped talent as it veers away from dependence from the mother leagues, thus ensuing a full-time commitment to the program.

The tour will be held accross the archipelago to compose the pool of players, in which the three of the best will join Kobe Paras who is well known in the short game as he proudly plays for the country starting from the age groups where he bagged a pair of dunk contest crowns.

"This has been a dream for most of us in a long time," said Paras, who won the 2013 and 2015 contests in the U18 level.

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