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American Samoa withdraw from FIBA Women's Asia Cup 2017
After qualifying for the FIBA Women's Asia Cup thanks to a silver medal performance at the 2015 Pacific Games, American Samoa had begun preparations for this year's event.
"We had already begun preparing for the tournament - recruiting players and looking for the new head coach to lead the national team moving forward," said American Samoa Basketball Association (ASBA) Vice President, Diehl Langkilde.
American Samoa had to withdraw from the event following unsuccessful bids for funding from its National Olympic Committee (NOC) and Government bodies.
Langkilde was disappointed with the level of support shown by the American Samoa National Olympic Committee (ASNOC).
"With ASNOC going through a transition of new officers, the basketball federation has been seeing a lack of support while they try to find their bearings of where funding should be allocated," he said. "We were unsuccessful in getting the team support grant that would've gotten us to the tournament as it was awarded to another sports federation."
The team support grant was awarded to the American Samoa Handball Federation.
"There seems to be a general lack of funding for the NOC to help fund teams to participate in events like the FIBA Women's Asia Cup," Langkilde continued.
After the unsuccessful bid for NOC funding, the ASBA turned its focus to the American Samoa Government.
"We even tried to source funding through the American Samoa Government but they are going through a financial crisis at the moment and were unable to offer their support. With neither entity able to provide support it really put us in a bad situation."
Following American Samoa's withdrawal, Group B will now consist of Sri Lanka, India and Uzbekistan.