Nepal Basketball League (NBL) Pvt Ltd is set to organize men’s and women’s basketball league events after a two-year hiatus.
The men’s league – Nepal Basketball League – will take place from May 21 and the Women’s Nepal Basketball League is scheduled to start on June 1, organizers announced at a press conference on Sunday.
Both events had not taken place for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Like the last two editions, the tournament will be a double round robin that will be played home and away,” said Arun Karki, vice president of the NBL. The men’s event will feature eight teams and the women’s event will feature five teams. The top four teams after the league ends will advance to the playoffs in either category.
“We started the event with a group of basketball enthusiasts at a time when there was not a single such event. And the event made a significant contribution to the development of national basketball” , said Karki.
The men’s league will have a total of 56 games and the women’s event will have 20 games. The top two teams at the end of the league will face each other in a qualifying match and the winner between them will get a direct final place.
Qualification will be a three-game event, with the team winning two games being eligible for the final.
The losing team will have a second chance for a place in the final thanks to the second qualifier as they will meet the winners between third and fourth places. While the losing team between third and fourth place will be eliminated from the race, the winner between them will compete for the second qualifier. All playoff games will be played in the best of three formats. But the final will be a one-match event.
The playoffs will begin on July 16 and the finals will take place on July 23. Each team would have to register 14 players and could name four foreign recruits to a squad. However, they could also play without foreign players.
Times International Club, Tribhuvan Army Club, Golden Gate International Club, Royal Basketball Club, Budhanilkantha Municipality Basketball Club, Kirtipur Basketball Club, Bishal Milan Kendra and Campion Solo are the participating teams in the men’s category. Times are the defending champions.
Four teams – Nepal Police Club, Lalitpur High Club, Royal Basketball Club and ISA Nepal – have confirmed their participation in the women’s event while the fifth is yet to be finalized. The police are the defending champions.
The last edition of the league ran from April to June in 2019 with the women’s event included for the first time while the men’s event was held for the second consecutive year.
Winners and runners-up in the men’s team will receive Rs 200,000 and Rs 100,000 in cash respectively, while the top two in the women’s category will take home Rs 100,000 and Rs 50,000 respectively. around Rs10 million, according to the organizers.
Meanwhile, the Nepal Basketball Association (NBA), basketball’s governing body, has already announced plans to host a franchise league this year.
National captain Sadish Pradhan says the upcoming events will greatly benefit the players.