Fragile Bogut still in doubt for FIBA World Cup

ROJE ADAIMY
Last updated 11:14 27/02/2014

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Andrew Bogut is likely to wait until the end of the NBA season before deciding whether his body can handle playing a World Cup campaign for Australia.

The 29-year-old has had a horror run of injuries in recent years, including a shoulder issue that saw him miss seven games for the Golden State Warriors this month.

Last November Bogut said he was "up in the air" about representing the Boomers at this August's showpiece in Spain because he was concerned about the strain on his body.

National coach Andrej Lemanis, currently on a global fact-finding and scouting mission, will pay a visit to the centre in coming weeks "to get a feel of where he's at".

He says there is no doubt, Bogut is committed to the Boomers, it's just a matter of whether his body is up to it.

"We've already had really good discussions with Andrew. It's not a point of convincing," Lemanis told AAP from San Antonio, Texas, where he's catching up with Spurs stars Patty Mills and Aron Baynes.

"Andrew's very clear in his message as far as he wants to play for Australia.

"But he needs to ensure that his body's right. Not only healthy at the end of the season, but that he can get through an international campaign and then get through another NBA season," Lemanis said.

"He hasn't had a good run of injuries over the last few years, so that's something that he's very conscious of.

"He'll get to the end of the season and he'll make a call and he'll know how his body is at that time."

Regardless, Lemanis said he has enough players at his disposal to build a solid squad - including Mills, Baynes, Cameron Bairstow, Brad Newley and top NBA prospect Dante Exum.

"As long as we can keep everybody healthy and get them healthy, we'll be in good shape," he said.

Mills has been in the best form of his career for the Spurs, scoring a combined 54 points in his side's past two NBA wins.

The point guard is off contract at seasons end, and while Lemanis is interested to find out his next move, it's a decision purely for Mills and his agent.

"I'll ask him the question, but that's nothing to do with me," he said.

"From our perspective, it's just whether there's any potential impacts it could have on the World Cup campaign. That's one thing we can just talk through."

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- AAP

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