The 3×3 National Team opened this Tuesday in Belgium with a division of honors at the start of the World Cup in this modality, by beating the Brazilian team 20-16 in the first hour and falling to Serbia 21-19 in the second hour, in a match that the Puerto Ricans were dominating until point 18.
Playing in Group A, the so-called ‘of death’, Puerto Rico had in their hands the second win of the day against the number one trio in the world rankings. Led by Gilberto Clavell, the Puerto Ricans pushed their chests and came to have an advantage of between two and three points, but the Serbs gained ground with a couple of long shots.
Puerto Rico is ranked fourteenth and is the ninth seed of the tournament in Belgium.
The delegation is made up of Tjader Fernández, Josué Erazo and Luis “Pelacoco” Hernández, from the Atléticos de San Germán in the National Superior Basketball (BSN), and the complete Clavell, from the Cangrejeros de Santurce. Ángel Matías, also from Santurce, chose to stay with the crustaceans, who are fighting for the postseason classification of the local tournament.
Puerto Rico will play again this Thursday, when the group stage ends with clashes against New Zealand (5:55 am) and France (9:55 am).
The tournament is divided into four groups of five teams. The first of each advances to the quarterfinals. Those who finish second and third in their groups advance to a “play in” tournament for the remaining spaces to the quarterfinals.
Along with Serbia (1), Puerto Rico (9) and Brazil (17), France, eighth seed at the World Cup in Belgium, and New Zealand (18) are also in Group A.
Serbia also won 21-19 against New Zealand, who also lost to France 21-13.
For the closing of the day on Tuesday in Group A, the game between France and Brazil remained to be concluded.
Puerto Rico finished fifth in the Amsterdam edition in 2019.