The Australian Olympic Committee has announced the selection of 28-year-old Sara Blicavs to the Australian Olympic Team for Tokyo, completing the 12-strong Opals squad following the withdrawal of Liz Cambage.
Victorian Blicavs will build on her family’s impressive basketball legacy, with father Andris an Olympic basketballer in Montreal 1976 and mother Kara (nee Ogden) representing Australia including playing in the 1983 World Championships.
Coming off the WNBL’s Southside Flyers 2020 Championship, the 188cm forward will make her Olympic debut.
Chef de Mission for the Australian Olympic Team for Tokyo Ian Chesterman congratulated Blicavs on her selection.
“Sara comes from a family with a fantastic Australian basketball heritage and I’m thrilled to announce Sara today to continue this legacy in Tokyo,” Mr Chesterman said.
“This Opals team is an incredibly strong group and I know Sara will be a fantastic addition to the squad. Today is a day to celebrate not just for Sara but for her family, coaches, teammates and supporters who have been there throughout her basketball career and have helped her realise her Olympic dream.”
Head coach Sandy Brondello said Blicavs’ versatility will be a great asset for the Opals in Tokyo.
“This is a dream that we all want to achieve in our careers and Sara’s been playing great” Brondello said. “She’s a player that continues to get better every single year.”
“She’s very versatile – she can shoot, she can rebound, she does a lot of great things She’s been in the [Opals] system for so long, she’s going to slip in really smoothly. We’re excited to get her with us and that she gets an opportunity to go to an Olympic Games.
“When you face some kind of adversity, when someone leaves the team, it means that you can replace them. It was really hard to pick that final 12, Sarah really was so close to making this team – it’s nothing that she didn’t do, it was more about the balance of the team. To make that call the other day to say that she’s the player we want made me happy.”