Rohit Bakshi is an India born entrepreneur settled in Japan and the CEO of YKBK Enterprise Pvt Ltd. His keen interest in basketball, took him to India in 2009 to explore the basketball scenario in the country. He found some raw talents with impressive skills and that influenced him to set up a professional basketball structure in the country.
Later in 2015, the 35-year-old helped some aspiring Indian players to move to Japan with the help of International Basketball Federation. Bakshi's main objective was to provide all kind of professional basketball training to the players.
All his efforts paid off, after the success of the program which Bakshi wanted to bestow. Most of the schools and colleges from Japan wanted more talents from India, as they asked him to provide more young players for their teams.
However, there are well-known players who found this opportunity as a career booster and flew to Japan. Amjyot Singh Gill and Amritpal Singh are among those famous Indian players who played in Japan. They were a part of Tokyo Excellence team. Amolpreet Kaur, an Indian ace who played in the 2017 Women's Asia Cup from the team India, could become a part of the Japan league soon.
Bakshi established Agleymina.EXE, 3x3 basketball team along with a local businessman Mr. Yoshiya Kato. The main motto behind setting the team was to show the strength of Indian players as well as to win a championship in Japan. The club made their way to the top 12, 3x3 teams in the world and won 3-x3 Japan Premier league Championship in 2016.
"If we're ready to work systematically and identify talent meticulously, we can then start to set really high standards for our players," Bakshi told IBTimes Singapore.
Bikramjit Gill, Inderbir Singh Gill, Palpreet Singh Brar, Amjyot and Bakshi have represented the Agleymina.EXE team in Japan as professional players. Bakshi and Inderbir knew each other since 2011. Inderbir helped Bakshi while setting up the team. Al though these type of basketball games don't include a coaching position, Inderbir took a step ahead to coach the team in its initial stages.
"He's been like a mentor to many players in India as well because he's a good leader and the players have a lot of respect for his achievements," Bakshi told about Inderbir.
Bakshi considers his fellow team mate Bikramjit, as one of the toughest players in 3x3 and he became a dominant player in past two years. Amjyot, another Indian basketball player is likely to be known for his passing abilities and shooting skills. Bakshi said that he took Agleymina.EXE to the next level. Palpreet played for a US based college basketball team. Later the defender joined Bakshi and other teammates in Japan and helped the team win many Championships in Premier.EXE.
"I have known Palpreet for a long time and met him this year for the first time. He is very athletic and his defense has helped the team throughout the season," Bakshi told about his another team mate.
Novi Sad Al-Wahda, two-time world champions, and Ljubljana are considered to be the world's top two clubs. Bakshi mentioned them as their top rivals of all time. Players from those top teams are trained to be all-rounders, they can shoot, defend, guard, drive or post-up.
Bakshi said that his role as an owner and a player are two different jobs altogether. As a player, he needs to give 100% to his team and on the other side as an owner, he has to handle other administrative functions, such as sponsors, travel, agreements, conditioning, food, payments and administrative functions.
He believes that in India there is a lack of systematic approach in training, which is a key requirement for a player. But in abroad the scenario is totally different. The training method has to be different from what people see now.
"As far as our goals are concerned, we must be realistic, if we aim to win World Tour Final then we need to put in place a pathway to do it," he mentioned.
Although, 3x3 is a different basketball game from 5x5, considered as the number one urban team game in the world. It is also an Olympic sport. The game structure is quite fast and has a huge ability to attract newcomers, who want to take up basketball as a profession.
According to Bakshi 3x3 format attracts the audience and triggers excitement a lot. These kinds of sports could create buzz, which will help them to create more basketball fans in India. With the approval from FIBA, Bakshi and his team have planned to bring the 3x3 league to India in 2018.Before launching the game in the country, they will showcase the league set-up on 16 and 17 September 2017, Ambience Mall, Gurugram.
Bakshi has also thought of bringing the World Tour to India. In this case, the main challenge would be to bring the international competition to India and make a wide avenue for the Indian players, who see themselves as professionals in this field.
India is the second country after Japan, where a professional 3x3 league is going to be introduced. It would be quite challenging for Indians, as they will be competing against other top countries in the league. There are few who are actually familiar with this game including FIBA's rules and regulations.
"The physicality of the format is also at a different level, and there's also the question of how they will adapt to the new format that has a different rules for fouls, players who have to do everything from constant movement to being your own coach, maintaining energy levels, to being able to shoot from anywhere," the Indian ace mentioned his concerns.