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USA host South Sudan, Germany in London before Olympics

COLORADO SPRINGS (USA) - Four-time defending Olympic champions USA will play South Sudan and FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 winners Germany at London's O2 Arena just days before the start of the Summer Games in France.

As part of the USA Basketball Showcase, USA will take on rising African powers South Sudan in a friendly on July 20, and then square off against the Germans on July 22 in another Olympic warmup.

Kevin Durant and LeBron James were part of the National Team last time USA played in London back in 2012

The games will be the first for the Americans in London since their gold medal triumph at the 2012 Olympics.

USA are No. 1 in the FIBA World Ranking Presented by Nike. Jim Tooley, CEO of USA Basketball said: "Facing South Sudan and Germany will provide optimal training opportunities as we prepare to defend our gold medal in Paris and we are thrilled to host them next summer."

The games in London will be hosted in partnership between USA Basketball and TEG.

South Sudan Basketball Federation President Luol Deng, who played at those Games for Great Britain, is eager for his country to face top teams in the buildup to France.

South Sudan qualified for the Olympics after a terrific showing at the World Cup

"As a young and developing program, South Sudan Basketball recognizes and appreciates the significance of each stage of our progress," Deng said.

"We accept this invitation as a welcome opportunity to compete at an elite level. The USA Basketball Showcase will be a valued addition to our preparation for Paris, and I look forward to the experience being in London, where my journey as an Olympian began 12 years ago."

Gordie Herbert, who coached Germany past the USA 113-111 in the Semi-Finals of the World Cup, an absolute must-watch game for the ages, said: "This a great opportunity to play the USA right before the Olympics. A final tune-up to compete against probably the favorite for the Olympic Games. It's a very good measuring stick for us.

"The game is played in a great venue. It's always a big challenge for us to play the United States."


Germany, meanwhile, have announced they will tip-off their Olympic preparations against France in Cologne, on July 6.

The friendly will be played on the same Lanxess Arena court where the countries traded blows on the opening night of the Group Phase at FIBA EuroBasket 2022. Germany won that encounter, 76-63.

"I'm really looking forward to starting the preparation for the Olympic Games with such an outstanding game," Herbert said.

"This is a great opportunity for us as a team to play in Germany against a team as strong as France. It is also a very attractive opportunity for our fans to support us like they did at EuroBasket 2022 in Cologne."

The teams will also play a pre-Olympic friendly in France in July, with the date and location still to be confirmed.

Germany, who finished third at EuroBasket 2022 behind runners-up France, will go into the summer No. 3 in the FIBA World Ranking while the French, who claimed the silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, are No. 9.