Via Basketball Australia – The Chemist Warehouse Australian Opals have successfully qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics at the FIBA Women’s Olympics Qualifying Tournament.
The road to the 2020 Olympics was a hard-fought one. After a loss to tournament-hosts France (72-63), Australia ranked second in FIBA rankings, needed a strong performance in both further games to keep the dream alive.
To qualify for an Olympic position, the team had to finish in the top three of their pool.
Head coach Sandy Brondello led the team to victory. Her job was made all the easier with an all-star lineup including Liz Cambage and Rebecca Allen.
Head of Women in Basketball, Lauren Jackson said that Australia’s performance at the Olympic qualifiers showcased how strong Australia can play on the world stage.
“We are seeing some of the best basketball in the world at the moment,” she said.
“The Opals’ performance during the Olympic Qualifying Tournament is only a small taste of what this team can achieve, especially when given more time to gel in the lead up to the Olympics.
“Bring on Tokyo 2020!”
CEO of Basketball Australia, Jerril Rechter said that she is immensely proud of how the Australian Opals have performed overnight in the high-pressured FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Bourges France, securing their spot in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
“Our Opals yet again delivered on the global stage, demonstrating why they are ranked number two in the world. It was a tough competition with all teams fighting for a spot to represent their country in the biggest sports event in the world.
“Our athletes are some of the best basketballers in the world. It’s a testament to their commitment, skill and talent that they continue to deliver week in and week out, with many of our athletes competing in the Qualifier Tournament amongst the WNBL domestic season.
“I am incredibly proud of what this team represents and importantly the role models they continue to be both on and off the court for the young girls and boys who are growing up playing basketball across Australia.
“It’s an exciting year for our Opals and I cannot wait to see their Olympic campaign continue.”