SINGAPORE (Singapore) – Brazilian club Sesi Franca emerged victorious from one of the most dramatic battles in competition history, 70-69 over Germany’s Telekom Baskets Bonn, to celebrate their first ever FIBA Intercontinental Cup title in the state-of-the-art Singapore Indoor Stadium on Sunday.
A buzzer-beater by forward Lucas Dias lifted the reigning Basketball Champions League Americas champions over their European opponents and gifted the trophy of the 33rd edition to Sesi Franca.
The Brazilians celebrated on their third attempt to capture the coveted FIBA Intercontinental Cup silverware, following defeats in the Finals in 1975 and 1980.
David Jackson, who dished the assist to Dias for the game-winner and averaged 17 points, 5.7 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game in Singapore, was voted tournament MVP by the accredited Media.
Ian Mahinmi, FIBA Intercontinental Cup ambassador and former NBA champion, was on hand to present the Sesi Franca veteran with the MVP award.
In another historical first on Sunday, two days after becoming the first Chinese club to participate in the FIBA Intercontinental Cup, the Zhejiang Golden Bulls became the first Asian team to step on the podium as they prevailed 81-74 over the Basketball Africa League champions, Egypt’s Al Ahly, in the Third-Place Game.
NBA G League Ignite signed off on a high note in Singapore against Bahrain’s Al Manama, after they pulled away from the FIBA West Asia Super League champions in the final three minutes of the game for fifth place to secure an 80-60 win.
FIBA Intercontinental Cup Singapore 2023 was a historic milestone in competition history, becoming the first edition to be hosted in Asia and the first to feature Asian clubs, in addition to teams from the Americas, Africa and Europe.
The competition also returned to be staged in September, so that it adapts more efficiently to the domestic and continental leagues’ calendar, and expanded the field of contenders to six teams, the most it has featured since 1987.
Real Madrid are the most successful club in FIBA Intercontinental Cup history, having won the trophy on five occasions.