Spain announce 16-player squad for games against Montenegro, Slovenia
MADRID (FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 European Qualifiers) - Spain will be looking for new stars to emerge when they play in this month's World Cup Qualifiers after announcing on Friday numerous uncapped players for the games at Montenegro and at home against Slovenia.
Javier Beiran, the standout small forward of 2017 Basketball Champions League winners Iberostar Tenerife, is in the 16-man squad for the two games, as well as up-and-coming big man Sebas Saiz of Burgos, a former Mississippi State University star who almost featured at FIBA EuroBasket 2017.
Herbalife Gran Canaria trio Xavi Rabaseda, Alberto Olivers and Oriol Pauli, Unics Kazan point guard Quino Colom and EuroBasket 2005 team members Fran Vazquez of Iberostar and Sergi Vidal of Joventut Badalona are other players likely to have important roles at Montenegro (November 24) and in Burgos (November 26) under coach Sergio Scariolo.
|Spain 16-player squad for World Cup Qualifiers against Montenegro and Slovenia|
|Victor Arteaga||Javier Beiran||Quino Colom||Jaime Fernandez|
|Sergi Garcia||Nacho Llovet||Xabi Lopez-Arostegui||Albert Oliver|
|Oriol Pauli||Xavi Rabaseda||Sebas Saiz||Alex Suarez|
|Fran Vazquez||Javi Vega||Edgar Vicedo||Sergi Vidal|
Up-and-coming youngsters Sergi Garcia of Tecnyconta Zaragoza and Xabi Lopez-Arostegui of Joventut Badalona have also been included. Each has shown a lot of promise with Spain's youth teams.
"Finally the time has come to speak about basketball after complicated months," Scariolo said. "I'm tremendously aware of the difficult mission to qualify for the World Cup considering the level of the rivals. I'm very enthusiastic about the players chosen.
"The team has been completed with a group of veterans that have great human quality and total commitment.
It's a totally competitive national team. And each time, I'm more optimistic, especially after speaking to them and receiving enthusiastic feedback. I'm proud that the veteran players are excited like children having received the national team call-up.
Scariolo highlighted Vazquez, who last played for Spain at the 2010 FIBA Basketball World Cup.
"He will be our next captain after several years out," Scariolo said. "The great majority of them has already worked out with us. We've been one year working towards this eventuality (of not having certain players.
"It's a totally competitive national team. And each time, I'm more optimistic, especially after speaking to them and receiving enthusiastic feedback. I'm proud that the veteran players are excited like children having received the national team call-up."