By Duncan Mackay
April 23 - Moscow will host the 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championships, it has been announced.
The tournament is due be held over the course of five days in June 2014, although the exact dates are to be announced at a later stage.
It is hoped that by then the discipline will have been added to the Olympic programme for Rio 2016, with the International Olympic Committee's ruling Executive Board set to make a decision later this year.
The Russian Basketball Federation (RBF), one of Europe's pioneers in developing 3x3, will host the second edition of the tournament that was first held in Athens in 2012 when Serbia won the men's event, United States the women and France the mixed competition.
The 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championships will follow a similar competition format to that used in the inaugural event, with men's and women's tournaments as well as individual contests.
In 2012, 48 teams - 24 men's and 24 women's - from 32 countries competed in the Greek capital.
"Russia has been a motor in the promotion of 3x3 basketball and showed their competitiveness in Athens last year."
Russia's teams finished in the top 10 at the 2012 FIBA 3x3 World Championships, with the men's side coming in fifth and the women's ninth.
"The tournament that Russia will host in 2014 will be very interesting," said Russia's Minister of Sport Vitaly Mutko.
"This sport is getting more popular here.
"Every year we organise the final of Russian competitions, where thousands of teams gather.
"We support FIBA's efforts to make 3x3 an Olympic discipline."
FIBA Secretary General and IOC member Patrick Baumann claimed that Moscow was the outstanding candidate to host the Championships.
"We were very pleased with the high interest and number of requests we received to host this tournament," he said.
"Ultimately, we decided that it has to take place in Russia, a country with such a long basketball and 3x3 tradition."
RBF President Alexander Krasnenkov claimed hosting the event will help the sport grow in Russia.
"The hosting of the 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championships will definitely have a positive impact on the development of basketball all over Russia," he said.
"Just the fact that such a big tournament will take place in our country will demonstrate that we are capable of hosting the events of the highest level."
The FIBA 3x3 World Championships are organised every two years, while the FIBA Under-18 3x3 World Championships are held on an annual basis - except the year of the Youth Olympic Games.
This year's FIBA 3x3 Under-18 World Championships are due place in Jakarta, Indonesia, from September 26 until 29.
As well as these national team competitions, FIBA organises each year the FIBA 3x3 World Tour, which sees teams representing cities from around the world.
The 12 best teams across those five stops qualify for the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Final.
This year's host cities are Tokyo, Prague, San Juan, Lausanne and Rio de Janeiro with the Grand Final due to be staged in Istanbul on October 5 and 6.
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April 2013: FIBA 3x3 World Tour to kick off in Tokyo this summer