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Jackson In Talks Over Spartak Return

17 May 2010

Spartak Moscow Region are in talks with Australia great Lauren Jackson with a view to coming back next season.

Winners of the last four EuroLeague Women titles, Jackson was a big part of two of those championship-winning campaigns but did not play for the club last season and instead competed in her native Australia.

"She's coming home," Spartak general manager Steve Costalas said to Basketball World News.

Despite the loss of Diana Taurasi to Fenerbahce and Sylvia Fowles to Galatasaray, Spartak have retained most of the core of their squad and kept their highly-rated coach, Pokey Chatman, onboard.

Chatman had served as an assistant coach the previous two seasons to Nata Hejkova and Laszlo Ratgeber before being promoted to the top job this season and she led the club to the European title.

As for the players, Ilona Korstin had been in negotiations with the club and has reached agreement on a new contract.

She will be among the Russia internationals in the squad, but Tatiana Shchegoleva has decided not to return to playing next year after missing the 2009-10 campaign.

USA international point guard Sue Bird is returning for a fifth consecutive year at Spartak and Anete Jekabsone-Zogota - the 2007 FIBA Europe Women's Player of the Year - will be back as well.

Sonja Petrovic, the 2007 FIBA Europe Young Women's Player of the Year, is another key player to watch in the Spartak team next season.

Petrovic was just returning to her best when she suffered an injury last in the campaign but she will be in the squad and Spartak are very excited about having the Serbian forward back.

The revelation that the 29-year-old Australia international Jackson, among the best players of all time, is likely to return will  be music to the ears of all Spartak fans, who will be confident of their team challenging for honors in all competitions.

Spartak expect to announce two other important signings later this week.

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