After a final pitch before the Fiba Central Board on Friday in Tokyo, Japan, the world’s basketball governing body granted China the privilege to host the 2019 Fiba Basketball World Cup.
China edged Philippines, which banked on the Filipinos’ passion for the sports and reach on social media in its bid for the hosting, in a decision broadcast over the world via streaming on Fiba’s YouTube account.
While the Filipinos rallied behind boxing legend Manny Pacquiao and Hollywood actor Lou Diamond Philips, China brought retired NBA player Yao Ming to bolster its bid.
China, a 15-time Asian champion, will be hosting the Fiba Worlds for the first time. The 2019 tournament will feature 32 teams for the first time. It will be the first World Cup played under FIBA's new qualifying process which begins in November 2017 and last 18 months.