The USA Basketball Women’s National Team is set to take on Serbia, Mozambique and Nigeria in Belgrade, Serbia, this upcoming February as part of the 2020 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament. Before the national team heads overseas, it will go on another college tour to play the UConn Huskies and Louisville Cardinals.
Team USA has qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics already, by virtue of winning the 2018 FIBA World Cup. Japan, the host nation, also has qualified.
In addition to Serbia, the other qualifying tournament host countries are France, China and Sweden. Australia, Brazil, France and Puerto will be playing in Bourges, France, while China, Great Britain, South Korea and Spain will be playing in Foshan, China. Lastly, Belgium (Finals MVP Emma Meesseman’s homeland), Canada, Japan and Sweden will be playing in Ostende, Sweden.
Team USA is 12-1 in 2019-20, with undefeated stretches coming at the FIBA AmeriCup (6-0) and in qualifying games in Bahía Blanca, Argentina (3-0).
Serbia won the bronze medal at the 2019 FIBA EuroBasket and also won bronze at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the first Olympics Serbia country qualified for. Meanwhile, Nigeria won gold at the 2019 AfroBasket and Mozambique finished fourth in that tournament.
Here’s head coach Dawn Staley’s take on the Serbia pool:
All three teams are on the rise and getting stronger in international basketball competition. These games will continue to help our team prepare for Tokyo — not only will it give us a chance to build chemistry, it will give the committee another opportunity to evaluate some of the younger talent that we have.
Team USA’s schedule
Jan. 27 — UConn Huskies (Hartford, CT)
Feb. 2 — Louisville Cardinals (Louisville, KY)
All games will played in Belgrade, Serbia.
Feb. 6 — Serbia
Feb. 8 — Mozambique
Feb. 9 — Nigeria