Sport

Three-on-three twist on traditional hoops

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January 14, 2017

Up and away: Hannah Wells looks to dish off this pass 3x3 basketball tournament at Shepparton Sports Stadium on Saturday.

Out of here: Ella Presley get her pass away in time.

My ball: Emily Archer looks to dribble away from her opponent.

Forget the raining three-pointers, the traditional five-on-five format and the coast-to-coast baskets, — Shepparton basketball has been dealt a 3x3 twist.

The Shepparton Sports Stadium was introduced to a modified version of basketball on Thursday with about 65 participants ditching the full court for half-court fun.

The 3x3 basketball tournament, consists of two teams of three remodelling a 14-minute half-court game.

The alteration sees shots from outside the three point line become two points, while everything else inside counts for one.

Greater Shepparton Basketball Association representative manager Nathan Williams was excited about the concept.

‘‘It’s a great way to play the game,’’ Williams said.

‘‘There are a lot of participants here and they all seem to be enjoying themselves out on the court.

‘‘You do not need a whole court and you can play it with your friends — 3x3 is a lot quicker, it’s is more entertaining and it more free flowing.’’

With 21 junior teams competing across the region on Thursday, including two from Wangaratta, one from Benalla and one from Wodonga, Williams said it was a great initiate for the school holidays.

‘‘It’s about getting the kids outside and playing with the basketballs again,’’ Williams said.

‘‘A lot of kids don’t touch a basketball over the Christmas period, so hopefully this can help them remain active.

The style of basketball is relatively unknown in Australia, although the International Basketball Federation has leagues running across Europe.

‘‘It’s huge in Europe, but in Australia it is not really big,’’ Williams said.

‘‘But it’s starting to improve as we find more and more competitions.’’

Along with 3x3 basketball, GSBA also held a slam dunk and three-point contest before the lunch break.

‘‘It was good fun and great to watch,’’ Williams said.

‘‘We lowered the ring so some of the juniors could jump up and reach it for the dunks.’’

The modified version is also fit for adults as the association also held a tournament at the Shepparton Sports Stadium last night.

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