|09 April 2013|
EUROBASKET WOMEN 2013
|Anastasiya Verameyenka will be a key component of the Belarus make-up this summer|
Rimantas Grigas has included fan favourites Tatyana Troina, Yelena Leuchanka and Anastasiya Verameyenka in the initial candidate list as Belarus begin preparing for Eurobasket Women.
The inclusion of the trio by the Lithuanian play-caller is a significant boost, although it remains to be seen whether all will participate.
The experienced Troina is battling to win her fitness race after missing the entire club season with Nantes Reze due to a serious injury and will need to prove she can contribute after such a lengthy lay-off.
As for Leuchanka, her participation is not yet guaranteed, but the Federation and Grigas will be hoping she can commit to participating in France, something that would significantly raise Belarus' chances.
The star opted to step out in the WNBA rather than play in the EuroBasket qualification games last summer, although did attempt to find a way to do both. Even though it was unsuccessful, she will be hoping to have more success in juggling her commitments this time around.
Meanwhile, Verameyenka reached the title game with Fenerbahce at the recent EuroLeague Women Final Eight in what has been a superb first season in Istanbul, and she is a lock to lead the way under the hoop.
Nadzeya Drozd is also back, six years after playing a handful of minutes as Belarus gained their best ever finish, with a bronze medal at Eurobasket Women 2007.
There are however some names missing, including Sviatlana Valko and Yulia Rytsikava who are both pregnant, whilst Viktoriya Hasper has struggled with injuries of late and isn't included.
Belarus have been drawn in Group D and will line up against Croatia, Czech Republic and Lithuania.
The full roster is as follows: Aliaksandra Tarasava (VS Prague), Natallia Anufryienka (Horizont), Zhanna Haradzetskaya (Tsmoki-Minsk), Nadzeya Yakovits (Tsmoki-Minsk), Nadzeya Drozd (Olimpia), Iryna Chubkavets (Berezina), Tatsiana Likhtarovich (Fortuna), Nataliya Trafimava (Energia Ivanovo), Katsiaryna Snytsina (Chevakata), Ala Murauskaya (Berezina), Volha Istseliatsova (Tsmoki-Minsk), Viktoryia Pantsiukh (Tsmoki-Minsk), Maryia Filonchyk (Olimpia), Maryia Papova (Olimpia) Ksenija Voishal (Olimpia), Maryna Ivashchanka (Horizont), Tatyana Troina (Nantes Reze), Marina Kress (Horizont), Anastasia Verameyenka (Fenerbahce), Yelena Leuchanka (Liaoning), Tatsiana Melnikova (unattached)