MIES, Switzerland (FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019) - Fans can now vote online for Son of Dream, Speed Tiger or Qiuqiu to determine which of the three will be the official mascot of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 after the trio was unveiled as the finalists during the Mascot Shortlist Ceremony held at the Wanda Han Show Theater in Wuhan, China on Tuesday.
Hundreds of mascot design proposals for the first-ever 32-team FIBA Basketball World Cup - taking place in eight Chinese cities from August 31-September 15, 2019 - were originally submitted, with the number whittled down to just 10.
During the ceremony, the number of candidates was further trimmed to just three by a panel consisting of FIBA, the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) and professors from the Chinese Central Academy of Fine Art.
Fans can find out more about Son of Dream, Speed Tiger and Qiuqiu and have until February 8 to submit their vote on WorldCup.basketball and FIBA.qq.com/FIBAWC to decide which one will be the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 mascot.
"We are delighted to have brought this grand ceremony to Wuhan, one of the host cities of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019, and we are impressed by the great basketball fanbase in this central Chinese city," said Predrag Bogosavljev, FIBA Sport and Competitions Director.
"We want to thank all of the participants who submitted hundreds of outstanding designs. We are confident the fans will now make the best choice to give the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 the best possible mascot."
Yao Ming, the President of Chinese Basketball Association and FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Ambassador, said: "The mascot for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 will be the one that can show the spirit of basketball as well as the rich Chinese culture, and of course, should be popular among all the countries around the world."
Liu Yingzi, Deputy Mayor of the Wuhan Principal Government, said: "In recent years, Wuhan has hosted many high-level sporting events - including the WTA Wuhan Tennis Open, FAI World Fly-in Expo, Wuhan Marathon, Wuhan International Horse Racing Festival and Wuhan International River Crossing Festival - which all enjoyed huge popularity and great turnouts. We are honored to be the only city in Central China to host the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019. In the past, we successfully hosted the men's and women's Asian basketball championships and a series of top-class basketball games. In 2019, Wuhan will again welcome all basketball players, national teams and guests as well as present our city's culture to all our friends from all around the world."
During the ceremony, 2,000 people witnessed a 20-minute spectacular stage show presented by Wanda Hanshow Theatre and directed by the world’s most prestigious show mastermind, Franco Dragone, thanks to the Wanda Themed Entertainment and the Wuhan FIBA Basketball World Cup LOC.
Among the distinguished guests on hand for this milestone event on the Road to China 2019 were: Yao Ming, President of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) and FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Ambassador; Liu Zhongchu, Deputy Secretary General of Hubei Provincial Government; Hu Gongmin, Director of Hubei Sports Administration; Liu Yingzi, Deputy Mayor of Wuhan Municipal Government; Duan Dongdong, Chief Executive Vice President and General Manager of Wanda Themed Entertainment (Sales & Marketing Centre). They were joined by former players Hu Weidong and Zheng Wu.