What does an American do on a day off during the FIBA Women’s World Cup?
Visit the zoo and have a hit of tennis with Nick Kyrgios, of course.
That was how USA star Jewell Loyd spent her Sunday getting up close and personal with koalas and kangaroos at Sydney Zoo then a meet and greet with the world number 20.
Loyd posting on social media:
“Got a chance to meet and watch a creative artist at work”
She also wished Kyrgios, who made the US Open quarterfinals earlier this month by knocking off world number one and defending champion Danil Medvedev, luck ahead of next month’s Japan Open.
The undefeated USA basketball team, with a quarterfinal berth already secured, play Korea in today’s World Cup pool games in Sydney.
FOLLOW FOR LIVE UPDATES IN LEAD-UP TO OPALS CLASH WITH CANADA
Preview: Familiar face to take on Aussies
Australia face Pool B pace-setter Canada and the familiar face who made history down under in a crucial clash Monday night.
Guard Kia Nurse is the only import in 42 seasons of the WNBL to win the league MVP (2019-20) and in two seasons with Canberra won a pair of championships in 2018-19 and 2019-20.
Nurse, who plays for Phoenix Mercury in the WNBA, returned from an ACL injury in Canada’s opening game of the FIBA Women’s World Cup against Serbia last week and will be a playmaker the Opals need to stop.
The 26-year-old has taken inspiration from Opal and former WNBL team mate Kristy Wallace in her return to the court.
Wallace comeback remarkable three surgeries culminate in four years before a whichted in her debut for the Opals last year.
“Wally is my inspiration,” Nurse said.
“It’s absolutely incredible to see her on the court and playing as well as she is.
“She did her knee and I watched her come back from the first one and when she was in practice I remember saying ‘the way she moves is incredible for someone coming off an ACL’ and then I was there when she did it the second time .
“I saw a lot of the mental battles she had to go through and I don’t think that’s something you can ever prepare for, an injury like that. It was smooth sailing for the first six or seven months and then the mental side hit and it hit hard. For Wally to have gone through it three times and come out on top and be as resilient as she is, play as tough as she does and fearless – that is what I want to be.”
Originally published as Australia v Canada FIBA Women’s basketball World Cup: Follow the latest news, analysis and fallout