Five IMG Reliance basketball players were selected as members of the boy's and girl's teams for the Children of Asia Sports Games. The five players include Sanjeev Kumar, Ashiv Jain, Kavita Akula, Pooja Ambastha, and Barkha Sonkar.The Games will be heldin the cities of Yakutsk, Mirny, and Neryungri of the Sakha Republic in Yakutia, RussiafromJuly 4-12.
Sanjeev Kumar and Ashiv Jain joined the boy's team under the direction of Coach Paramdeep Singh during the first week of the games. Kavita Akula (team captain), Pooja Ambastha, and Barkha Sonkar will compete in the second week under Coach Jagat Narain Nerha.
These five athletes were part of the IMG Reliance Student-Athlete Program during the 2011-2012 academic year. This program offered 29 athletes in tennis, soccer, and basketball the opportunity to train under the guidance of world-class coaches at IMG Academy's top-notch facilities. Prior to attending IMG Academy, these students played on youth teams in India and were selected by IMG Academy basketball coaches during a series of trials. The boys joined head coach Nate Vander Sluis and the girls were directed by head coach Shell Daily.
The Children of Asia Sports Games held its first event in 1996, now hosting the games every four years. Thus far, the games have welcomed young athletes from over 20 countries of Asia and 27 regions of Russia.
The expenses were funded by the Basketball Federation of India (BFI) in an effort to expose young athletes to the international level of sport and encourage their development and growth as players. The BFI oversees all the national level basketball programs in India and serves to promote development of the game.
For more information on the games, click here.