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Russian team’s center Bolomboy unlikely to play at 2019 Basketball World Cup — head coach

The center has a trauma, the head coach clarified

MOSCOW, August 21. /TASS/. Russia’s US-born basketball player Joel Bolomboy is unlikely to join the national team at the upcoming 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup in China, Sergei Bazarevich, the head coach of the Russian national basketball team, said on Wednesday.

"Bolomboy will be unable to play at the world championship with a 90-percent certainty," Bazarevich told journalists.

Bolomboy, 25, also has a citizenship of Ukraine. He played in the past for NBA clubs Utah Jazz and Milwaukee Bucks. The 6 feet 9 inches (2.06 meters) center is currently playing for Russia’s CSKA Moscow basketball club.

"Since we do not have a roster of players we counted on, we are trying to change the game strategy," Bazarevich continued. "We are going to the World Cup as the fourth best team of Europe, but there is little left of the previous roster."

The coaching staff of the Russian national basketball team announced last week that point guard Alexei Shved would miss the global basketball tournament since he had not fully recovered from an ankle injury. Point guards Dmitry Khvostov and Dmitry Kulagin as well as center Timofei Mozgov were also excluded from the team’s roster due to their earlier sustained injuries.

"However, it is in itself great to qualify for the World Cup as we have not played in this tournament for 10 years already," the 54-year-old Russian basketball coach said.

The 18th edition of the FIBA Basketball World Cup for men’s teams is scheduled to be hosted by China between August 31 and September 15. Following the Draw on March 16, the Russian national team was placed in Group B alongside the teams from Nigeria, Argentina and South Korea.

President of the Russian Basketball Federation Andrei Kirilenko told TASS earlier in the month that he believed in the success of the national team at the upcoming 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup in China, although some of the leading national players would be absent on the squad due to their injuries.