China to host 2019 FIBA World Cup

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — The 2019 FIBA World Cup will be played in China.

This announcement was made late Friday (August 7) afternoon after both the Philippines and China made their final pitches to the FIBA Central Board in Tokyo, Japan.

China’s victory marks the end of a 17-month bidding process, which started in August of 2014.

The FIBA flagship event will feature 32 teams for the first time, and will be played under FIBA’s new competition format.

The new format requires teams undergo a 18-month qualification process that would take place from November 2017 to February 2019.

Breaking from tradition, FIBA decided to move their biggest tournament from 2018 to 2019, to avoid clashing with other major international sporting events.

China has a vast amount of experience in hosting international events, having hosted the Summer Olympics in 2008 and being set to host the 2015 FIBA Asia Championship. The Chinese bid featured the use of eight different venues in eight different cities: Beijing, Nanjing, Suzhou, Wuhan, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Foshan and Dongguan.

NBA Basketball icon Yao Ming headlined the Chinese delegation in Tokyo.