Monday, July 28, 2008

Olympic Preparation Begins in Earnest

On day one of the Olympic break, national teams are gearing up for the competition, which is a week and a half away (Aug. 9 is the first day of women's basketball in the Olympics).

In Wollongong, the host Australian Defence Force Opals defeated Brazil 99-62 in the first of two friendly matches. Here's the box score and a recap courtesy Basketball Australia. Lauren Jackson had 19 points, seven rebounds and three steals for the Opals. Ho hum. Penny Taylor added 17 and Belinda Snell scored 16. Brazil is playing without Storm center Kelly Santos; she said in June she would join her team in Australia for the teammate, so she might be in the lineup Wednesday when the teams play in Sydney, but I didn't get a chance to check with her on that yesterday.

As for Storm guard Sue Bird, she had an early-morning flight to Palo Alto for practice with the U.S. Olympic Team at Stanford University. The U.S. will practice at Stanford through Thursday before heading to Haining, China for the 2008 FIBA Diamond Ball Tournament. Here's the schedule. Jayda Evans is blogging from the U.S. practices.

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