Buenos Aires, Nov. 13.- The women’s basketball teams of Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and the United States will seek, in the Olympic Preclassification that begins this Thursday, two of the places that will allow them to continue in search of the qualification for the Olympic Games.
The home run will take place in the Buenos Aires city of Bahía Blanca, cradle of Argentine basketball, and the two best teams will qualify for the 2020 FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualification Tournament, which will be held in February.
In Group A, which will take place in parallel in the Canadian city of Edmonton, the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Puerto Rico will participate, in addition to the local block.
The United States, which won the last three World Cups, and seven of the last nine, is the favorite to keep one of the two places granted by Group B.
After conquering the gold medal of the AmeriCup undefeated and winning four games of preparation for the Pre-Olympic, on Monday the American team suffered its only stumble in a friendly against the University of Oregon, the number one in the country.
“It was the kind of rivals we wanted to have in the field to improve our preparation for the tournament in Argentina. The defeat should help us improve,” said coach Cheryl Reeve.
Brazil is, in the papers, the second strongest team selection. In addition, he arrives at a great moment after winning the Pan American Games and being third in the AmeriCup.
But Argentina dreams of snatching the ticket to the February tournament.
“The bad thing about having the United States in the group is that it already has its place secured. But our goal is to be able to qualify,” Argentine forward Natacha Pérez said Tuesday.
The bad news for the local team is that the 26-year-old base Melisa Gretter, one of the team’s figures, will be absent because the fifth metacarpal of the right hand fractured last August.
“Qualifying is complex, but not impossible,” said coach Leonardo Costa.
Colombia, meanwhile, intends to hit the ball and keep second place.
Those led by Luis Miguel Cuenca, fifth in the last AmeriCup, were historically surpassed by their continental rivals and, like Argentina, never qualified for the Olympic Games.
This Thursday, Argentina will debut before Colombia and the United States will face Brazil.
On Saturday, Argentina will face Brazil and the United States and Colombia.
On Sunday, at the close of the tournament, the locals will play against Brazil and the United States against Colombia.
All the matches will be at the Dow Center in Bahía Blanca, with capacity for about 4,000 spectators.