Flames pair power Opals to FIBA Asia Cup bronze medal
The Australian Opals, headlined by Flames’ Tess Madgen and Lauren Nicholson, have claimed the bronze medal at the 2023 FIBA Women’s Asia Cup with a resounding 81-59 win over New Zealand – who was led by Sydney’s interim head coach Guy Molloy.
Australia quickly put the disappointment of Saturday night’s semi-final loss to China behind it, embracing the short turnaround to produce some of its best team basketball of the tournament in front of a sold-out crowd at Sydney’s Quaycentre.
The top-four finish sees the Opals advance to next year’s Paris 2024 Olympic qualifying tournaments.
It was another rose gold medal for trio captain Madgen, Darcee Garbin and Anneli Maley who were part of the Opals World Cup side in Sydney less than 12 months ago.
Australia had five players score in double figures led by Alice Kunek who had an equal game-high 19 points along with Tall Fern Penina Davidson, who represents Melbourne Boomers in the WNBL.
— Sydney Flames (@TheSydneyFlames) July 2, 2023
Madgen was awarded player of the game for her all-round effort which featured 14 points, five assists, three rebounds and three steals.
While Nicholson put up five points, two rebounds and two steals in the victory.