By Paul Osborne

Kosta lliev, sports director of FIBA 3x3, has said the sport allows smaller cities to host exciting sports events ©Getty ImagesApril 3 - The increasingly popular 3x3 basketball give smaller cities a great opportunity to host exciting sports events, according to Kosta lliev, sports director for the discipline at basketball's world governing body.

During a webinar discussing how best an event host can create a positive, sustainable legacy, the International Basketball Federation's (FIBA) sports director for 3x3 claimed the new discipline gives smaller cities a chance to act as host because of the sport's use of predominantly temporary structures.

"See, 3x3 has a way of allowing smaller cities to organise exciting events," said Iliev.

"With 3x3's use of temporary venues you can host an event practically anywhere.

"This has opened many new doors for us."

FIBA's 3x3 basketball has gained huge popularity since it made its international debut at the 2010 Summer Youth Olympic Games in Singapore.

Played outdoors using just one basketball hoop, the sport has gained an increasingly urban culture with events tending to be held alongside a background of music, individual "dunk" competitions and a growing digital experience.

Kosta lliev explained that 3x3 basketball's ability to be played in the most popular areas of a city has resulted in its increasingly successful growth ©Getty ImagesKosta lliev explained that 3x3 basketball's ability to be played in the most popular areas of a city has resulted in its increasingly successful growth ©Getty Images

Iliev told the webinar, hosted by SportAccord International Convention and SportBusiness, that in order to keep sustainability at its core, 3x3 events are looking to follow the same pattern as that of Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) events, in that they secure a long-term contract with host cities in order to create a legacy within that city.

"With our events, for example our 3x3 World Tour, we are trying to sign three-year contracts," Iliev said.

"We want to stay in a particular city and build a legacy there.

"When we appoint a host city, we work with that city in order to produce an event that is lasting such as those in the ATP.

"This builds traditions and inspires kids to practice the sport."

Iliev claimed 3x3's growing success is down to the outside, urban nature of the sport and its accessibility across nearly any city.

The fact that 3x3 is played outside "brings people down to spectate who usually wouldn't if it was played inside in a gym," according to Iliev.

This allows the sport to increase its participation levels and allow for the further growth of 3x3 basketball, he added.

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