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Canadian Women’s basketball team nominated for Rio 2016

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On Friday, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Canada Basketball named the twelve athletes nominated to represent Team Canada in women’s basketball at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games from August 5 to 21.

The team includes seven athletes who competed at the London 2012 Games: Natalie Achonwa, Miranda Ayim, Kim Gaucher, Lizanne Murphy, Michelle Plouffe, Shona Thorburn and Tamara Tatham. First-time Olympic team members Nirra Fields, Miah-Marie Langlois, Kia Nurse, Katherine Plouffe and Nayo Raincock-Ekunwe round out the 12-woman roster.

The Canadian women won back-to-back gold medals in 2015, first at the Pan Am Games in Toronto, and then at the FIBA Americas Women’s Championship in Edmonton, which qualified the team for Rio.

In preparation for the Games, the team completed a 4-1 run in a European exhibition series and went 3-0 in a friendly tournament against China. Next week, the team heads south for the USA Basketball Showcase, where they will take on Australia, France and the United States.

Kim Gaucher speaking on behalf of the team said, "As an athlete there is no greater honour than to represent your country at the Olympic Games. To be able to hear your anthem with Canada across your chest sends chills down your spine. I am humbled to be a part of this team and we can't wait to inspire and make our country proud."

The women’s Olympic basketball tournament runs August 6-21 with the preliminary competition taking place at the Youth Arena in the Deodoro Olympic Park and the quarter final and medal games taking place at the Carioca Arena in the Barra Olympic Park.

At Rio 2016, Canada expects to field a team of approximately 314 athletes.