The countdown is on for for the Opals' shot at redemption
The Australian Opals' roster for the World Cup in Sydney next month has been announced, and now it’s all systems go!
Image credit: FIBA
Representing your country at a World Cup on home soil is a once-in-a-career opportunity, and the 12 Opals who will represent Australia in Sydney next month have been selected.
The inclusion of Lauren Jackson has grabbed most of the headlines and deservedly so, as the GOAT is back in green and gold six years after retiring due to debilitating knee injuries. It’s a story that will go down in Australian sporting folklore and if the Opals are able to grab a medal, the story will only get even better.
Having said that, Jackson is far from the only newsworthy selection in this squad, with every single player having a story. There’s Kristy Wallace, who has fought all the way back from career threatening knee injuries to make her first Opals World Cup squad. Sami Whitcomb, who was inexcusably left off last year’s Tokyo Olympic team, making her return the wear the green and gold at a major tournament for the first time since the 2018 World Cup. The star of Anneli Maley continues to shine brighter and I’ve got a feeling a lot more people — both in Australia and across the globe — will know her name after this tournament.
There are feel good stories at every turn, but on the opposite end of the spectrum, the trio that missed the final cut — Jade Melbourne, Maddy Rocci and Alanna Smith — would be heartbroken. I have no doubt they’ve got huge Opal careers ahead of them and will be back in the green and gold soon enough.
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