‘It’s my first time in Singapore…’
On March 6, the Korea Basketball Association announced the 8 men’s and women’s national teams to participate in the ‘FIBA 3×3 Asia Cup 2023’ to be held in Singapore on the 29th. Both men and women were selected by 5-to-5 professional players. In particular, for the men’s national team, Sangmu’s Huh Hoon, Song Gyo-chang, Kim Nak-hyun, and Park Je-hyeon were named. These are the players who represent the league and represent the team and need no further explanation.
I didn’t know until now. Are you leaving for Singapore?
After a week, on the 13th, I finished going to work on Monday, which is said to be the hardest. As soon as I sat down at my office desk, turned on my computer, and took a breather, I received a call from CEO Park Jin-hwan. Unlike usual, I thought it would be time to drink tea lightly, but it started with the main topic.
“Follow the national team to Singapore.”
Opportunities and experiences that do not come easily, and the excitement of going abroad. I envy someone, but at an unexpected moment and in a situation where I was not prepared, the overseas business trip was more worrying than excitement.
#Preparation ‘Where’s my passport…’
After work, I could easily find my passport in my room. There was also time left. With the help of senior Han Pil-sang, I was able to share the schedule for the national team. I asked Jumpball editor Son Dae-beom, who has a lot of overseas coverage experience, how to apply for coverage of FIBA, and I signed up as a member and applied for coverage of this Singapore 3×3.
Senior Son Dae-beom encouraged me by saying, “Have a good trip. It will definitely be a good experience and a time for you to grow.”
There was also help from senior Kim Nam-seung, who helped analyze the national team’s strength. In particular, Namseung sunbaenim knows the atmosphere of the 3×3 field better than anyone else. He listened to the atmosphere at the scene and even received the most helpful tips in this interview. Right away,
“You’d better sign up as a photojournalist. You’ll be close to the court and you’ll be able to move around.”
He accessed the FIBA site again and changed his application to become a photojournalist. Thanks to these two seniors, I successfully completed my FIBA media registration.
From laptops to cameras to travel carriers. All preparations are complete.
# Worry ‘Can I do well?’
“Have a nice trip to Singapore!”, “Have a rest while you’re gone~”, “Must try the flaked shrimp!” These are
the words I heard from seniors at the company on my last day at work before leaving the country. It’s not a trip (?), it’s an interview (!). I think I have had some experience of traveling abroad. There is no problem heading to the first country. However, as the departure date approached, tensions and worries grew. This is because this is not a trip, it is an interview.
The departure time of the national team is March 27th at 16:10. I arrived at the promised place in advance and waited for the national team. There were several groups of fans who came to cheer for the national team.
30 minutes passed, and anyone could see that it was the national team. Two people with one head higher than the others. A group of people driving a crowd like the Pied Piper. With Heo Hoon at the center, Kim Nak-hyun, Song Gyo-chang, and Park Jung-hyun are the men’s national team. Likewise, the women’s national team, which consists of professional players such as Lee Da-yeon, Jeong Ye-rim, Lee Su-jeong, and Lim Gyu-ri, also moved together from the Jincheon National Training Center.
After completing the boarding procedure, the national team greeted the cheering fans shortly before heading to the departure screening under the guidance of a basketball association representative. It is natural for the men’s national team to have experience from youth to adult national teams, and the female national team players also had international competition experiences during their youth, so the airport seemed familiar.
While the national team was resting in the lounge, I walked through the airport terminal with a cup of coffee with coach Kang Yang-hyun, who leads the men’s national team.
“Director, I think I’m most nervous here.”
“Baegija. Don’t worry too much. You’re good. Go and take care of our players.”
#Weather ‘Environment like a wet sauna. It’s pretty good.’
It’s the style of staying up all night before leaving the country. It is my own way to solve the boring flight time with sleep. Again, as soon as the plane broke through the clouds, I fell asleep. After a flight of more than 6 hours, we arrived at Singapore Changi International Airport. I felt damp from inside the plane.
I came out of the airport with the national team waiting for my luggage. As expected, there were local fans who came to cheer for Team Korea. From departure to arrival, there were many fans next to Team Korea. After greeting the local fans, the national team took a bus prepared by FIBA and the Singapore Basketball Association (hosted by) and headed to the team’s accommodation. The national team will live in a hotel prepared by the organizers during the tournament. Arrived at the hotel at 11:50 PM on the 27th (all times from now on are local time)
The face of the national team that arrived at the accommodation was, of course, full of fatigue. Move from Jincheon to Incheon early in the morning. Take a plane to Singapore. The humid weather and the tired national team seemed to go to bed right away. Although they were tired players, they even finished the interview like a professional. It was a video interview, but washing your face is a luxury for cool people. The players who finished the interview waited for tomorrow like that.
First morning in Singapore. It was really hot and humid. Originally, I don’t eat breakfast, but I was curious about what the players eat. The menu was diverse enough to cater to all tastes of players from various countries gathered in Asia, such as various fruits and drinks, as well as omelettes and naan. In particular, salmon and tofu sushi were responsible for the taste of the reporter. 카지노
After a quick meal, the players packed coffee at the cafe across the hotel and moved to the weight room. For those who have exercised their whole lives, it is natural to greet the morning at the weight room. After sweating for over an hour, the players changed their clothes and beat the heat in search of a swimming pool with a weight room and a wall.
After finishing their morning routine, the athletes rested in a cool room. Heo Hoon found a place to have lunch himself. Heo Hoon took the lead and headed to the restaurant. The feeling of walking in the humid weather was like being in a wet sauna. Unlike the players, personally, it wasn’t bad.
I have a problem. The restaurant Heo Hoon found is closed today. Heo Hoon hurriedly turned on his smartphone and found a restaurant recommended by a fan via DM. Fortunately, it was close by so I didn’t have to walk long.
The players ate one menu per person and ordered a variety of dishes to taste local food. The spice scent was strong, but I ate all the food without any problems. After lunch, of course, coffee. The person in charge of the association, who visited a nearby star cafe, took the lead, and Heo Hoon took the lead at the checkout counter.
After chatting at the cafe, the players headed to the reserved warm-up court for 2:00 p.m. OCBC Arena, where the tournament is held, is a 35-minute walk from the accommodation. At first, the national team tried to move on foot, but the players who saw the hot taste of Singapore’s weather hurriedly found a taxi. There was no separate shuttle bus between the athletes’ accommodation and the venue, so they used the local Uber service every time.
Warm up, throw the ball. The faces of the players were bright. Both men’s and women’s national teams said , “The first game is important. I think I will know 3×3 after playing the game once.”
After completing the 3×3 dedicated court adaptation training for nearly an hour, the players moved back to their lodgings. After washing, the players moved to a restaurant near the accommodation that Heo Hoon found to have an early dinner. The players’ composure was really up to this point.