Euroleague Basketball has confirmed the lineup for the 2013 Euroleague Basketball Nike International Junior Tournament (NIJT) in London, from May 9 to Sunday May 12.
England Under-18s have already received a wildcard entry, in an effort by the Euroleague to help grow the sport in the UK, and they will face off against seven other top junior teams (four who have secure their places through qualifying tournaments, and three other wild cards) to be crowned Europe’s junior champions
KK Spars Sarajevo of Bosnia and Herzegovina advanced from the Torneo Città di Roma; FIATC Joventut Badalona of Spain made it through the Torneig Junior Ciutat de L’Hospitalet; Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius of Lithuania was the champion at the Euroleague Junior Qualifying Tournament Inter RAO Lietuva; and Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade of Serbia qualified from the NIJT Classification Tournament Belgrade. Joining them will be FC Barcelona Regal of Spain, INSEP Paris of France, Team China and the aforementioned Team England.
For both Team China and Barcelona, this will be a third consecutive year at the NIJT. Lietuvos Rytas is back to defend its 2012 NIJT crown. Crvena Zvezda and 2010 winner INSEP have made multiple past appearances, while Joventut, Spars and Team England will compete for the first time.
For more than a decade, the NIJT has seen some of the top junior players in Europe compete, and as such, the NIJT alumni club is becoming a who’s who of European basketball stars. Many players who participated in previous events can be seen on Turkish Airlines Euroleague and Eurocup rosters.
The group stages of the NIJT will be played from Thursday to Saturday at The London Soccerdome, located in front of The O2, whilst the final will be contested at The O2 on the same court where hours later the Euroleague champion will be crowned.
Fans have free admission to all games including the final, giving a unique opportunity to those who do not have Final Four tickets to see the arena from the inside.
Fans will be able to follow all of the action at the official Euroleague NIJT London website.