Spain, Belgium Trim Squads

25 August 2011

EuroBasket 2011

15. Ilunga Mbenga (Belgium)
Didier Mbenga will not represent Belgium at the EuroBasket 2011

Belgium, Spain and FYR of Macedonia have made their final cuts ahead of the EuroBasket, which tips off in six days in Lithuania.

The coach of the Belgians, Eddy Casteels, has decided to release his only NBA player, center Didier Mbenga, and Jean-Marc Mwema.

Mbenga, who had surgery in mid-June, did not impress in last weekend's BEKO Supercup in Bamberg.

He had just two points and three rebounds in a defeat to Germany, 10 points and three boards against Turkey and eight points and seven rebounds against Greece.

Belgium lost all three of those games.

"Didier Mbenga is medically fit, but physically and mentally not ready," Casteels said.

Belgium will go up against Bulgaria, Georgia, Ukraine, Slovenia and Russia in Group D.

Scariolo, meanwhile, has decided to let Real Madrid forward Carlos Suarez go from his squad.

The Spaniards will be competing in Group A against Turkey, hosts Lithuania, Great Britain, Poland and Portugal.

"Carlos has worked well and we are sorry that he has to leave us," Scariolo said.

"But we feel that the decision taken is the best for the needs of the team."

Spain, meanwhile, continue to have injury concerns over two important players.

Point guard Ricky Rubio is still recovering from a sprained ankle and Rudy Fernandez, a member of the All-Tournament team at EuroBasket 2009 in Poland after helping Spain capture the gold medal, has an arm injury.

Both players were hurt over the weekend in the friendly wins at home against Slovenia.

FYR of Macedonia coach Marin Dokuzovski has also decided upon his 12-man squad with youngsters Aleksandar Kostoski, Ivica Dimcevski and Zlatko Gocevski cut.

The Macedonians are in Group C with Greece, Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Finland.

Belgium squad: Sam Van Rossom, Jonathan Tabu, Jorn Steinbach, Guy Muya, Roel Moors, Dimitri Lauwers, Marcus Faison, Randy Oveneke, Axel Hervelle, Maxime De Zeeuw, Christophe Beghin, Tomas Van Den Spiegel.

Spain squad: Jose Manuel Calderon, Ricky Rubio, Victor Sada, Juan Carlos Navarro, Rudy Fernandez, Sergio Llull, Fernando San Emeterio , Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol, Serge Ibaka, Felipe Reyes and Victor Claver.

FYR of Macedonia squad: Dimitar Mirakovski, Vlado Ilievski, Darko Sokolov, Bo McCalebb, Vojdan Stojanovski, Damjan Stojanovski, Marko Simonovski, Todor Gechevski, Pero Antic, Kiril Nikolovski, Gjorgij Chekovski and Pedrag Samardziski.


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