Government to allow larger crowd numbers for Estonia-Israel basketball game

25.11.2021 | 16:29

The government has classified the FIBA World Cup 2023 qualifying game being held at Saku Suurhall arena in Tallinn this Sunday between the national men’s basketball teams of Estonia and Israel as an event of overwhelming public interest and therefore raised the permitted number of spectators to 3360. The Estonian Health Board supports the event being held with a larger crowd provided the organiser reduces the risk of the spread of coronavirus in accordance with the plan submitted.
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According to the plan, the crowd will be divided between four sectors and have no contact with one another, the players or game staff. Admission will be solely upon presentation of a COVID certificate, and the wearing of masks will be enforced. The sectors will allow for spectators to be dispersed, and each area will have its own ventilation. Use of horns and other such paraphernalia will not be permitted. The Estonian Basketball Association will be issuing a notice calling on spectators to arrive at the game in good time so as to avoid queues at entrances when presenting certificates and documents. The doors will open an hour before the event is due to begin. A total of 14 entrances will be open for the four levels of the arena.

The first games in November mark the launch of the Estonian men’s basketball team’s bid to qualify for the FIBA World Cup 2023. During the qualifying stages, Estonia will be playing against Germany, Poland and Israel.

The team’s first game will be against Germany in Nuremburg tonight. Facing Israel at home this Sunday will be the team’s second game in the qualifying tournament, which will then continue in February and June 2022.

The Estonian Basketball Association has been making preparations for the Estonia-Israel game at Saku Suurhall arena for a number of months. These are now complete, and tickets went on sale for the game on the assumption that indoor events could be attended by up to 6000 people. Current restrictions in place since 15 November set the maximum number of spectators for indoor sports events at 1000.

The Estonian Basketball Association has no authority to postpone or cancel games. According to FIBA regulations this would lead to disqualification from the qualifying tournament, in which Estonia secured its place on the basis of previous qualifying rounds.

Government Communication Unit