FIBA Americas has announced that Mexico will host the 2015 FIBA Americas Championship, a qualifying tournament for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games.
The tournament will be played in the Arena de Monterrey in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.
The venue is a coliseum that hosts more than 150 concerts and shows every year, with a capacity of 17,559 spectators. It has also hosted two NBA pre-season games.
This continental championship already has nine qualified teams in the shape of Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Uruguay and Venezuela. The 10th participant, which is a spot allocated to the USA, will be confirmed following their result at the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup.
If the USA win the tournament in Spain (30 August-14 September), they will automatically qualify for the 2016 Olympics and therefore not have to play in the FIBA Americas Championship. This in turn would mean that Panama, who came in fifth at Centrobasket, will be the 10th participating team. If the USA do not win the FIBA Basketball World Cup, they will take their place in the field in Monterrey next year.
“It is a great pleasure for us in FIBA Americas to announce Mexico as the home of the next edition of our most important event,” said FIBA Americas President Usie Richards.
“They have proven with their gold medal win in Caracas in 2013 and the organisational excellence in this 2014 Centrobasket, that there is a resurgence of the sport in Mexico and we are confident that this decision will result in accelerated development of basketball in the country.
FIBA Americas President Alberto Garcia added: “It is important to acknowledge the support of the Mexican Olympic Committee, in the figure of its president, Mr Carlos Padilla, the National Commission of Physical Culture and Sports (CONADE) and its General Director, Mr Jesus Mena and the Mexican national federation (ADEMEBA) who together have made this historic moment possible for Mexican basketball.
“We would also of course like to thank the Venezuelan Federation and the Brazilian Confederation for their interest and participation in the process.”