Limited number of fans to be allowed at FIBA Olympic Basketball qualifier in Victoria

Limited number of fans to be allowed at FIBA Olympic Basketball qualifier in Victoria
Nicholas Pescod/CHEK News
Spectators will be allowed at a 10 per cent capacity inside the venue.

Fans will be able to view a sporting event in person for the first time in months in B.C.

The FIBA Olympic Basketball qualifying event will be held at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre in Victoria from June 29 until July 4 and a small number of fans will be able to view the competition in person.

Dr. Bonnie Henry, the province’s provincial health officer, has confirmed that the venue will be allowed to have spectators at 10 per cent capacity.

Masks will be required at all times unless someone is eating or has an exemption and people will need to be spaced out by two metres.

Committee chair for the FIBA 2020 Men’s Olympic Basketball Championship Clint Hamilton said the committee is very excited about the approval, and work is being done to accommodate the spectators

“As a committee, we’re obviously very excited and please that the variants that we submitted to the public health officer was met with confidence in a way that we received an exemption to be able to allow fans to take in some of the tournament,” said Hamilton.”We are assessing and looking through the requirements within the order to determine how many tickets there can be.”

Ticket refunds were being done up until a couple of days ago, according to Hamilton. With the limited capacity, he says there may be a raffle system to determine who can enter the venue with the number of ticket-holders left.

“We know that there are more people wanting tickets than probably what we have available,” said Hamilton. “So, we want to be as fair as we can and reward those who’ve stuck with us.”

Hamilton says the achievement feels like a reward for what the province has gone through as a society to get to this point in the pandemic.

“I’m just excited to have people coming to events, the be sharing, to be inspired by the players they’ll see,” he said. “It gives us a sense that, in my mind, it’s a reward. It’s a reward for the work that we’ve done as a society to allow for the opportunities for people to come and partake in this event.”

Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre is currently undergoing preparations for the event. Spectators will be allowed in the venue starting Jul. 1.

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