Sloukas' recovery a major boost for Greece
NANJING (China) - With just two days for the start of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 in China, Greece received a major boost with the addition of point guard Kostas Sloukas to the final roster, Greece Basketball Federation confirmed.
The experienced guard, who suffered a calf injury during a warm-up game against Italy earlier this month, has now been added to the Greek side, who will open their quest to the ultimate prize of the 32-nation tournament in Group F in Nanjing against Brazil, New Zealand and Montenegro.
|Greece's 12-man roster for FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019|
|Giannis Antetokounmpo||Thanasis Antetokounmpo||Ioannis Bouroussis||Nick Calathes|
|Georgios Papagiannis||Georgios Printezis||Giannoulis Larentzakis||Evangelos Mantzaris|
|Ioannis Papapetrou||Kostas Papanikolaou||Kostas Sloukas||Panagiotis Vasilopoulos|
The 29-year-old guard joins a constellation of stars that includes the 2019 NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo, former Memphis Grizzlies guard Nick Calathes and the likes of Ioannis Bousoussis, Georgios Printezis and Kostas Papanikolaou.
Talking about his reintegration to the 'Hellas' squad, the 1.90m (6ft 2in) couldn't be any happier than that: "This is what we all were hoping for since the day I got injured. Being ready to come to China has now materialized, and of course, I am really happy."
It'll be Sloukas' second FIBA Basketball World Cup appearance, after helping his country to an eighth-place finish five years ago in Spain where he averaged 4.2 points in six games.
Sloukas worked all the way up to become a key member of the European heavyweights, and when head coach Thanasis Skourtopoulos called him up for the European Qualifiers, the Thessaloniki native responded with averages of 12.5 points and 6.5 assists.
"I worked hard in Athens over the last 10 days and it has paid off. I am here working with the team day by day in order to be 100 percent ready for game action. We talked with the coach about my condition and we are all now ready to tackle our objectives," said the man who helped Greece claim a silver medal at FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2009 in Auckland, New Zealand.