|26 July 2013|
|Bad news for Georgian basketball fans, as Tornike Shengelia will not play at EuroBasket 2013|
Georgia international Tornike 'Toko' Shengelia is to undergo knee surgery and will not participate at EuroBasket 2013 with his national team, the Brooklyn Nets announced on Thursday.
The 21-year-old forward, who played in the NBA's Summer League in Orlando as recently as last week, will have an operation to repair a damaged meniscus in his left knee on 31st July, in the United States.
In addition to missing out on the showpiece September event with Georgia, Shengelia could also be sidelined during the start of the new season.
Shengelia crossed the Atlantic last summer to join the Nets and in his rookie season with Brooklyn he appeared in 19 games averaging 1.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 4.9 minutes per game.
Shengelia's absence is an enormous blow to Georgia's hopes of advancing to the Second Round of the EuroBasket, in what will be their second consecutive appearance in the tournament.
Georgia already had to plan their campaign without star center Zaza Pachulia, who underwent Achilles tendon surgery in April.
In last summer's EuroBasket Qualification Round, when Georgia had both NBA players at their disposal, Shengelia had averaged 13.7 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.6 assists per contest and was instrumental in his national team's success in securing a spot in September's big tournament in Slovenia.
At the age of 19, Shengelia was already an integral part of the Georgian senior side as they made their first-ever appearance at a EuroBasket, in the 2011 edition in Lithuania and had contributed 8.8 points and 4.6 rebounds in that campaign.
Georgia were drawn in First Round Group C at EuroBasket 2013 together with reigning champions Spain, hosts Slovenia, Poland, Croatia and the Czech Republic.