Sport Basketball Boomers to face USA in Olympics group stage

Boomers to face USA in Olympics group stage

Aussie Andrew Bogut was influential in the Boomers win.Getty
Andrew Bogut is on the move – but it's not clear where he will end up. Photo: AAP
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The Australian men’s basketball team will face defending champions the USA in the third match of the group stage at this year’s Olympics, while the women’s side will battle hosts Brazil first-up.

The Boomers have been drawn in Group A alongside the 2012 London Games gold medallists, China, Venezuela and two teams to be decided at the Olympic qualifying tournaments in July.

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They are scheduled to play the two qualifiers first, before the United States on August 10.

The Opals, medallists at each of the past five Olympics, will open their campaign against Brazil on August 6, followed by two clashes with teams yet to qualify, Japan, then another qualifier.

The announcement of the Opals draw follows news that star Liz Cambage wants to educate her teammates and Basketball Australia about racism in sport following her recent social media drama.

Cambage took a swipe at Melbourne Boomers and fringe Opals forward Alice Kunek three weeks ago for posting a photo of herself in “blackface” at an end-of-season party.

Liz Cambage
Liz Cambage wants to educate teammates on racism. Getty

“I’ve reached out to (Basketball Australia CEO) Anthony Moore,” Cambage told Channel Nine’s Wide World Of Sports.

The 24-year-old Cambage, whose father is Nigerian, conceded that she “shouldn’t have blasted Alice” on Twitter but wants to make people understand why she was offended.

“I’ve just given up my services to see if anyone – members of the board, players – want to sit down and talk with me about race issues in sport.”

Basketball Australia has promised to talk to players about racial and religious vilification at camps and competitions in the lead-up to this year’s Rio Olympics.

Cambage hit out at Kunek, who was apparently dressed up as rapper Kanye West, posting she was “shocked and disturbed to see this behaviour from someone I’m meant to call a `teammate’”.

While Cambage was adamant she won’t be changing her outspoken nature that sometimes gets people off-side, she said she perhaps could’ve dealt with the issue privately.