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Souza confident after Brazil reveal final roster
SAO PAULO (FIBA World Championship for Women) - Brazil star Erika Souza is heading to the FIBA World Championship for Women in confident mood after she was confirmed as the headline name on the final roster.
The center is looking forward to making an impact in Turkey along with the other 11 names announced by head coach Luiz Augusto Zanon.
"Expectations are as positive as possible," stated the player, who has recently returned from another season competing in the WNBA.
"Myself and the girls will fight tooth and nail and also with a lot of guts for positive results.
"We want to come back with a medal and show that Brazilian basketball does not only live on memories.
"We are doing a renewal and a rebirth.
"And I want to contribute to this by giving my best on the court."
Having missed the 2013 FIBA Americas Championship for Women in Xalapa, Mexico where Brazil scraped onto the podium, the return of Souza provides an immeasurable boost.
She is joined by fellow WNBA competitors Damiris Dantas and Nadia Colhado, while one particularly exciting addition is Isabela Ramona, who gets a first opportunity at a senior global tournament having starred at last year's FIBA U19 World Championship for Women.
Brazil continued their preparations by playing against the men's U18 team in a practice game in Sao Paulo and tied 81-81, with Coach Zanon generally pleased with what he saw.
"It was a great match, although I think the intensity could have been a little stronger, but this is still part of the preparation process," he said.
"From a coaching perspective, I had the opportunity to see the girls running plays and doing this against boys who are physically stronger defensively.
"But we still had some errors in the execution of our movement at the right time.
"Our goal is to now play as many games as possible (in Turkey) which could be six or seven if our results see us play for first to fifth place."
Brazil squad for FIBA World Championship for Women: Adriana Pinto, Clarisso dos Santos, Damiris Dantas, Debora Costa, Erika Souza, Isabela Ramona, Jacqueline de Paula, Joice Coelho, Nadia Colhado, Patricia Teixeira, Taina Paixao, Tatiane Pacheco.