06 - 21
August 2016
6 Andrew BOGUT (Australia)
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Kickert, Maric to join Boomers as Bogut wait continues

MELBOURNE (Rio 2016 Olympic Games) - A couple of veterans will dust off the national team cobwebs and join Australia at their training camp in Melbourne next week.

With center Andrew Bogut's status uncertain as he recovers from an injury to his left knee that he suffered while playing for the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals , big men Daniel Kickert and Aleks Maric have been drafted into the squad that will have workouts 5-14 July.

Bogut has remained in the squad with Boomers coach Andre Lemanis hoping he will be able to play at the Rio de Janeiro Games, but Dante Exum is no longer in the group after withdrawing from consideration on 6 June. Exum tore an ACL last year in the build-up to the FIBA Oceania Championship and didn't play in the 2015-16 NBA campaign with the Utah Jazz.

Australia 18-player squad for Rio 2016 Olympic Games

David Andersen Cameron Bairstow Aron Baynes Andrew Bogut
Ryan Broekhoff Matthew Dellavedova Adam Gibson Cameron Gliddon
Chris Goulding Joe Ingles Nathan Jawaii Daniel Kickert
Kevin Lisch Aleks Maric Damian Martin Patrick Mills
Brock Motum Brad Newley    

Australia always knew it was going to be difficult for Exum to make it to the Rio de Janeiro Games but Lemanis left the door open as long as possible for a comeback.

"The frustration and disappointment was evident in his voice when we spoke," Lemanis said. "It was heartbreaking. "The health of the athlete is always the number one concern and consideration. While we are all disappointed he won't be with us this year, I know that he has a tremendous international career ahead of him."

Kickert has been a terrific professional in both Europe and Australia's NBL and last featured with the Boomers at the 2011 London Invitational, a test event for the following year's Olympics in the British capital. Maric, a member of the Boomers squad at the 2012 Games, has been a solid center for different teams in Europe.

Aleks Maric (AUS) played for the Boomers at the London 2012 Games

"I'm pleased for both Daniel and Aleks that they will get an opportunity to compete in the camp,” Lemanis said. "Both are quality players and quality people who will each bring a different set of skills for the coaching staff to consider in terms of the overall mix of the team. Being in a position to bring in players of their quality at this point is another illustration of the depth of talent we currently have in this country."

Australia will have a couple of warm-up games in Melbourne at the Hisense Arena against a team of American college basketball players from the Pac-12. The Boomers will face the Pac-12 Conference All-Stars on 12 July and 14 July.

"The camp and games at Hisense Arena form a critical part of our preparation for Rio," Lemanis said.

"We will continue to build on our offensive and defensive structures from previous years. We will also invest a lot of time off the court ensuring that, as a team, we put ourselves in the best position to deal with the challenges that lay ahead."

At the Olympics, Australia will compete in Group A with China, the United States, Venezuela and two sides that win FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments, which are to be staged in Turin, Italy and Belgrade, Serbia (4-9 July) and Manila, the Philippines (5-10 July).