The reports from over the weekend regarding Aussie star Ben Simmons’ decision to forego the upcoming FIBA World Cup have been confirmed.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski had stated it was “doubtful” that Simmons would be playing in the World Cup, electing to spend his whole offseason prepairing for the Philadelphia 76ers’ upcoming season.
The All-Star guard mentioned he still plans to head back home for camps and training, as well as playing with the Boomers in their upcoming Exhibition Games. He also mentioned his excitement for the talent the Australian National Team possesses, and that he is “honored and humbled” to represent Austrailia in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Simmons is set for an early return to Philadelphia to get acquainted with his new teammates for the upcoming season and concluded his statement with how he’s looking forward to working with the Boomers’ coaches and teammates in pursuit of a medal at the Olympics.
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Simmons had announced at the end of this past season that he would “be a Boomer for the upcoming events.” His name was also on the official roster that was announced a few days later.
While he will play in the upcoming Exhibition Games, Aussie natives will have to wait until the 2020 Olympics to see Simmons suit up for games that count.
The last time Simmons played in a Boomers jersey was the FIBA Oceania Championship in 2013.
Australia kicks off their World Cup preparation with a slate of games against Canada and Team USA in Melbourne and Perth next month. The FIBA Basketball World Cup will take place from Aug. 31 to Sept. 15 in eight different cities in China, with the Boomers drawn in Group H alongside Lithuania, Canada and Senegal.
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