Nneka Ogwumike and Elizabeth Williams gained’t play for Crew Nigeria within the 2020 Tokyo Olympics after their attraction was denied by the Court docket of Arbitration for Sport on Monday, according to ESPN. Final week, the WNBA stars have been notified by FIBA that their petition to play for Nigeria was denied as a result of they’d performed for USA Basketball for too lengthy. Usually, FIBA doesn’t enable gamers who’ve competed for USA in main occasions previous the age of 17 to compete for one more nation. The ruling got here regardless of USA Basketball releasing each Ogwumike and Williams upon request.
Williams performed for the People in 2018 FIBA AmeriCup, and Ogwumike gained MVP within the 2020 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Match. Ogwumike’s sister, Chiney, has been granted permission to play for Nigeria as a naturalized participant, although her attraction to be acknowledged as a Nigerian, like their sister Erica, was denied. Every nation is barely allowed one naturalized participant.
Ogwumike and Williams’ omission from Crew Nigeria’s roster is heartbreaking for each athletes, however Nneka Ogwumike has had an particularly robust summer time. After struggling a knee sprain in June, she was lower from the American Olympic roster regardless of assurance she’d heal in time. She’d competed for Crew USA in quite a few FIBA World Cups relationship again to the U18 2008 staff, and was one in every of eight WNBA gamers chosen to compete in opposition to top-10 faculty packages in 2019. Ogwumike is the one WNBA MVP to not play within the Olympics, and together with her effort to play for Nigeria in Tokyo denied, the 31-year-old have to attend one other three years.
Williams performed in Crew Nigeria’s exhibition recreation in opposition to Crew USA on Sunday as she awaited the results of her attraction, scoring 4 factors with 4 rebounds, one help, two steals, and one block in 29 minutes. Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike didn’t play within the 93-62 defeat.
After the sport, Crew Nigeria head coach Otis Hughley made an announcement for why the duo must be allowed to play. “Permit them the chance to assist develop the sport,” Hughley mentioned, according to ESPN. “That continent would simply be turned on its head for basketball, in a great way. You don’t have any concept what number of lives could be impacted and altered for the ages.”
Sadly, FIBA and the Court docket of Arbitration for Sport wouldn’t let it occur.
https://uproxx.com/dimemag/nneka-ogwumike-team-nigeria-olympics-denied-appeal-elizabeth-williams/ | Nneka Ogwumike, Williams Appeals Denied, Will not Play In Olympics