‘Tis the season, BallinEurope supposes. Organization and publicity for Christmas season invitational tournaments has begun in force; one such entry in the young basketball scene this December is the Rinus de Jong Invitational scheduled for December 28 and 30 in Den Bosch, Netherlands, with four-team competitions for the U18 and U21 age groups.
Three teams have thus far confirmed their participation in the tournament, with BC Khimki Moscow Region confirming its spot in the U18 division. Fans of youth ball will want to note the promised appearances of Team Russia’s Stanislav Ilnitskiy and Vasily Martynov on this team.
Hometown club/reigning Netherlands U20 champions Eiffel Towers den Bosch will be represented in the U21 category; in last year’s inaugural edition of the Rinus de Jong, the Dutch side finished third behind Mega Vizura Belgrade and Canarias Basketball Academy.
A second team in the U21 category will be from U.S.-based Wilbraham & Monson Academy prep. Head coach Chris Sparks’ roster includes five international players: Spain’s Alex Ramon and Germany’s Maodo Lo are joined by the triple towers of New Zealand’s Mark Overdevest (2.23 meters/7’3”), Haïti’s D-Jery Baptiste (2.11m/6’9”) and Nigeria’s Sadiq Adedeji (2.11m/6’9”).
Organizers are reportedly in negotiations with teams from Spain, Serbia, Lithuania, Estonia, France, Belgium, Germany and Czech Republic to fill out the tournament brackets.