Iran wheelchair basketball team traveled to Bangkok, Thailand Friday night to take part in the U23 Asia Oceania Zone qualifying tournament for the U23 World Championships.
Six countries will participate in the championship, which will commence on the 23rd January in Bangkok, Thailand.
The six teams from across the Zone will be competing for three spots at the U23 World Championships in Toronto this June. The competing teams are: Thailand, Iran, Australia, China, India and Japan.
“I can say we are 90 percent ready for the competition,” Iran coach Hassan Palar told Paralympic.ir. “Our main goal is winning the title as well as booking a place in the U23 World Championships.”
Traditionally Australia, Iran and Japan have been favorites to win the tournament. However at the last Zone tournament China showed that they are also to be taken as a serious opponent when they defeated Japan in their final pool game but after a successful Kitakyushu Cup last December, Japan are expected to continue their strong form in the tournament in hope to guarantee them a place at the U23 World Championships.
The tournament promises to have high level games with many close results. A simple loss of concentration from any team could easily see them eliminated from the medal round and consequently miss the opportunity to go to Canada.