Impressive drone photo of Miaouli Square and Ermoupolis’ Town Hall in Syros. (Photo: Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival)
ATHENS – Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival’s team guided its guests to the secret and most authentic spots of the island of Syros, giving them the opportunity to discover the beauty of its landscapes, the flavors of its rich gastronomy, the culture as well as the kindness and hospitality of the residents, July 6-10. More than 6,000 people over five days visited the event’s basketball courts in Miaouli Square, with the imposing view of the Ermoupolis’ Town Hall, serving as a reference point and background.
Sports tourism and the community of Syros came to prominence!
From the impressive squares and aristocratic mansions, the municipal buildings and picturesque chapels of the Orthodox and Catholic churches to the museums, historical monuments, beaches, fairy-tale districts and traditional flavors, Syros was at the center of the world basketball map highlighting the island’s sports and culture.
Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival filled the entire island with people of all ages, adults and children, amateurs and professional athletes, and above all with people who love sports. At the same time, the event highlighted the sports tourism of Syros, as it brought visitors to the hotels for their stay on the island for at least the five days of the event.
Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival 2022 made its historic comeback after three years, the vision of Georgios Printezis again turned Ermoupolis into the capital of basketball and contributed more than 20,000 euros to the Children’s and Nursery Centers of Syros Hospital.
In Miaouli Square, from the early morning until the evening, the sound of basketball echoed, giving a unique sports aura to the cosmopolitan capital of the Cyclades. More than 80 teams of all ages competed in all categories, creating beautiful stories, highlighting impressive talent, and further developing the passion for sports. The Elite category, where professional athletes from all over Greece competed, stood out for another year. Its winners, four young teammates in the FEA New Philadelphia team, managed to lift the trophy and competed with Georgios Printezis and his prime guests in a Panhellenic television broadcast.
Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival 2022 started its first night with the VIP League – the Championship of great Greek and European athletes, with the participation of Olympians and significant guests. On Saturday night, as soon as the moon appeared over Ano Syros, Ermoupolis welcomed its honorary guests.
Olympians and champions honored the event
The Olympic gold and bronze medalist in rings, three-time world champion and five-time European champion Lefteris Petrounias, Tokyo 2020 Olympic gold medalist and European champion in rowing Stefanos Ntouskos, Olympic silver medalist, world champion in open water swimming and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Famer Spyros Gianniotis, and Vassiliki Millousi, with three participations in the Olympic Games and many distinctions in World, European championships and in Mediterranean Games in gymnastics, shined and honored the event with their presence and participation in the basketball celebration in Syros.
The most beautiful basketball show was written with great guest stars
The two-time European champion and MVP of the EuroLeague Final-4 Vasilije Micić, the EuroLeague Legends Dimitris Diamantidis, Theodoros Papaloukas and Joe Arlauckas, one of the top centers in Europe Nikola Milutinov, the European champion with the Greek National Team and the Real Madrid Giannis Bourousis, one of Europe’s top power forwards Kostas Tsartsaris, this year’s top player of the Greek basketball league and member of EuroLeague’s top-5 players Sasha Vezenkov, and Giorgos Papagiannis, member of this year’s top-5 players in the Greek basketball league, came to Syros for the All-Star Game of the VIP League.
Top athletes were present in Syros!
Among the participants of this year’s event were Giannis Athinaiou, Giannoulis Larentzakis, Dimitris Agravanis, Dimitris Katsivelis, Michalis Lountzis, Christos Saloustros, Linos Chrysikopoulos, Katerina Sotiriou, Dimitris Moraitis, Nikos Persidis, Nikos Gkikas, Eleanna Christinaki, Giannis Agravanis, Katerina Spatharou, Panagiotis Christoforos, Katerina Chalikia, Stella Fouraki, Georgia Veloudou, Stefania Patera, Minas Papagiannis, Vassilis Karahalios, Konstantinos Papadakis, George Kopsidas, and Nikos Chouchoulis.
The completion of the groups’ first stage found the Head and Shoulders Rings of Petrounias, Chrysikopoulos, Gkikas, Sotiriou and the Elite winners taking the lead and qualifying for the final. Moreover, the “Agorakia Lemarga” team proved to be very strong as they competed against top athletes. The Greek international basketball player with the Greek national team, Gkikas, made an excellent appearance and gave the victory to his teammates with an 11-10 score, winning the first big cup.
Giannis Bourousis was named MVP
On Sunday, the FlexCar Lions were the main leaders in the grand final of the All-Star Game. Bourousis, Larentzakis, Chalikia and Papadakis won with a 19-11 score against the Stoiximan Warriors of Printezis, Diamantidis, Christinaki, Karahalios and Stoiximan CEO George Daskalakis and were applauded by the whole island. The 38-year-old Bourousis was named Flexcar MVP of the Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival 2022, with the great veteran and much-loved player winning the new award of the institution’s most valuable player, for the first time.
Georgios Printezis was awarded by Syros – Ermoupolis Mayor Livadaras with a laurel wreath plaque, symbolizing the Olympic values, as well as by Cyclades Deputy Regional Governor George Leontaritis and Stoiximan CEO George Daskalakis. The Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival initiator was also honored by the organizing company Progame, and its President Fanis Xintavelonis as well as its CEO Giannis Laskaris with a uniquely crafted painting. An honorary award was presented by Cyclades Deputy Regional Governor Leontaritis to Real Madrid legend Joe Arlauckas, the oldest participant of the event at age 56.
The event returned and was held for the fourth time in what was envisioned as a sports-tourism celebration for children and parents, athletes and fans for Syros #WeAreSyros.
Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival 2022 was organized by Progame, the Municipality of Syros – Ermoupolis and the Region of South Aegean.
Stoiximan AegeanBall Festival was held under the auspices of the Hellenic Basketball Federation and the Cyclades Basketball Clubs Association, with the support of the Cyclades Amateur Basketball Referees Association.
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