The Australian Gliders have completed a six-game international series against the USA at Basketball Australia’s Centre of Excellence while also taking part in the country’s first 3×3 international wheelchair basketball tournament.
Utilising the series as a selection camp for a tour of Tokyo in August for the Mitsubishi Electric Cup tournament as well as preparing and developing the group for the AOZ Qualifiers ahead of the 2020 Paralympics, the Gliders’ squad of 17 gained significant experience against a quality opponent.
Following the first three games, the Gliders were unable to get on the winners list against the USA in their final three contests.
Amber Merritt once again paced them with 14.7 points and five rebounds per game in those last three outings while Georgia Munro-Cook was consistent with 8.7 points per game.
Shelley Cronau started two of those matches, recording an average of four assists, Teisha Shadwell finished off the week with two points, nine rebounds, five assists and two steals in Game 6 while youngsters including Natalie Alexander, Isabel Martin and Taishar Ovens received significant court time.
Breaking up the six-game series, Australia and the USA divided their squads into four teams to compete in the first 3×3 international wheelchair basketball tournament for either country.
The introduction to the newest discipline of basketball is important for the Gliders as 3×3 will make its debut in able-bodied and wheelchair basketball at the 2022 Commonwealth Games to be held in Birmingham.
Coinciding with the 3×3 games, Commonwealth Games Australia announced Petria Thomas OAM as the Chef de Mission for the tournament in three years time.
Basketball Australia wishes to extend its gratitude to Commonwealth Games Australia for their ongoing support of the 3×3 pathway.
The Australian Gliders results for the international series vs. USA (all times AEST):
June 28: Gliders def. by USA 48-67
June 29: Gliders def. by USA 45-76
June 30: Gliders def. by USA 45-60
July 1: Gliders def. by USA 36-89
July 3: Gliders def. by USA 53-73
July 4: Gliders def. by USA 33-67