Balanga gets boot from Manila Challenger

By Ivan Stewart Saldajeno

September 7, 2019, 7:54 pm

MANILA -- The Balanga Chooks were eliminated from the Chooks-To-Go FIBA 3x3 Manila Challenger after losing its pool stage matches on Saturday at the SM Fairview Events Center in Quezon City.

Also known as the Bataan Risers, the Balanga Chooks, the only direct invite in the tournament that is the first major 3x3 event the Philippines is hosting since last year's FIBA 3x3 World Cup, suffered losses by finishes.

The Balanga Chooks fell to a 16-22 shocker against Humpolec behind a nine-point performance from Jan Kratochvíl.

Balanga then succumbed to world number two Riga Ghetto, 15-22, with the number one 3x3 player in the world, Karlis Lasmanis, sizzling late and finishing with nine markers as well.

The results brought Humpolec and Riga into the quarterfinals on Sunday.

The development leaves Pasig Chooks as the only club from the host country left in the running.

Pasig needed to undergo the qualifying phase to join Balanga in the tournament proper, beating fellow Chooks-To-Go Pilipinas 3x3 sides Zamboanga Valientes and Isabela City Chooks, also known as the Basilan Steel, in the qualifiers.

However, Pasig Chooks lost to Ulaanbaatar, 16-22, putting the club in a must-win against Kranj to qualify for the quarterfinals. The Pasig-Kranj match is ongoing as of posting.

The other Filipino team in the field, Narvacan, failed to get past the qualifying phase as Melbourne, which eventually made the quarterfinals too, dominated their qualifying pool. (PNA)