FIBA World Championship 2006 - Unofficial Blog

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Australian Nielsen to miss World Championship

Australian Basketball is seriously worried after they learn that forward Matthew Nielsen will miss the FIBA World Championship over a contract bungle.

According to reports, Nielsen recently signed a three-year contract with Lithuanian basketball club, Lietuvos Rytas, but problems with the insurance of the contract have forced the 28-year-old out of the Boomers team.

Furthermore, Basketball Australia chief Scott Derwin said this is an increasing problem with the escalating costs of insuring the larger international contracts of Australian professional players.

"We were obviously very keen to have him involved in the squad for our World Championships campaign and have been working with him and our insurance brokers for the past six weeks to resolve this uncomfortable issue," he admitted.

"But we must know that the insurance premium to cover his international contract is almost The same as what it is to cover the entire team of 12 players including NBA player Andrew Bogut."

In fact, the loss of Nielsen is an unwanted distraction for the Boomers as they prepare for a difficult group where they will battle basketball giants Lithuania and European champions Greece.

We must remember that Nielsen has been a part of the Boomers set up since 1998. He was also a part of the squad that went to the Athens Olympic Games in 2004.

As we know, the FIBA World Championship will begin on August 19 and it is hosted in Japan.

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