Boomers’ pre-Olympic clash with US cancelled due to COVID concerns

The Boomers’ pre-Olympics exhibition game with the United States in Las Vegas has been cancelled because of coronavirus-related issues.

The Australian men’s squad were set for a re-match with the Olympic champions on Saturday (AEST) after shocking the US in their first warm-up game on Tuesday.

A decision to abandon the game came hours after the US confirmed Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal had withdrawn from the Tokyo Olympics after being placed into health and safety protocols.

The team also said another player was under a COVID-19 cloud.

The Boomers have not reported any COVID-19 concerns among players or officials since their 91-83 victory over the US.

They trained on Thursday (local time) while remaining under tight restrictions in their pre-Olympics camp.

But USA Basketball deemed the game against the Boomers a risk.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the USA men’s national team exhibition versus Australia on Friday has been cancelled,” USA Basketball said in a statement.

The women’s clash between the two countries, also scheduled for Saturday (AEST), will still go ahead.

While it has not been confirmed that Beal tested positive to COVID-19, Detroit’s Jerami Grant has also been “placed under COVID-19 health and safety protocols”.

US coach Gregg Popovich said he remained hopeful that Grant would be able to stay with the team.

Beal was a starter in the US Olympic team’s first three exhibition games that included shock losses to Nigeria and the Boomers, followed by a victory over Argentina.

They have yet to name a replacement for the guard.

The United States’ final exhibition game is scheduled for Monday (AEST) against Spain.


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