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Sunday, July 25, 2021

Thybulle joins Boomers’ Olympic camp

Matisse Thybulle has arrived at the Boomers’ Olympic pre-selection camp in a major boost to their Tokyo medal hopes.

Thybulle was named in the NBA All-Defensive second team this season and, after spending seven years of his childhood in Sydney, the dual citizen is eyeing a national team debut as the Boomers chase a maiden Games medal.

Thybulle’s Philadelphia 76ers’ teammate Ben Simmons opted not to play in the Olympics, ruling himself out earlier this week to instead focus on skill development after his disappointing playoffs exit.

Thybulle is keen for a Tokyo tilt though, the 24-year-old joining Joe Ingles, Patty Mills, Matthew Dellavedova and Aron Baynes as NBA regulars in a Boomers side that is in a crowded field of contenders behind the United States to claim gold.

The squad, which has already been narrowed to 16 from 19 after the withdrawals of Simmons, Ryan Broekhoff and Isaac Humphries, has been training under veteran coach Goorjian in Los Angeles for a week.

The squad will be whittled down to 15 – a 12-man Tokyo squad and three emergencies – before they play exhibition games in Las Vegas against Argentina, Nigeria and the United States from July 11.

The side will begin their Olympic campaign against Nigeria on July 25.

The Boomers are chasing their first-ever medal in a major international tournament after fourth-placed finishes at the 2019 World Cup and the previous Olympic Games in Rio 2016.

AAP

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