Flames stars named in Opals World Cup squad

December 6, 2021 | Sydney Flames news

Two of the Flames’ brightest stars have been named in the 24-person Opals squad for the 2022 FIBA Women’s World Cup in Sydney next year. 

Shyla Heal and Keely Froling have been named in the squad announced by Basketball Australia today.

They will play in the qualifying tournament in Serbia in February next year, ahead of the World Cup in the Hoops Capital in September. Australia have already qualified as they are the hosts, along with the United States who won gold in the Tokyo Olympics. 

The Opals will play against qualifiers host Serbia, Brazil and South Korea in Group A.

Heal and Froling have joined the Brydens Sydney Uni Flames this year for the 2021-2022 WNBL season which started at the weekend. In a three-point loss to the UC Capitals, Heal scored nine points and Keely Froling scored 13 points and grabbed seven rebounds in a solid debut for the team.

Sydney Flames and Kings chairman and co-owner Paul Smith said it was a just reward for Heal and Froling. 

“Representing your country is arguably the number one goal in sport, it’s a rare honour which very few people achieve, so for Keely and Shyla this news is something very special,” Smith said. 

“I know the FIBA Women’s World Cup is firmly the focus of the Opals and the potential to have Flames players repping Sydney in Sydney in 2022 would be wonderful.   

“For now, this initial selection is testament to Keely and Shyla’s talent and hard work. “ 

Froling, who is co-captain of the Flames, played with the Opals early this year and won bronze at the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup in October. 

Heal’s addition to the squad has her one step closer to achieving her World Cup debut and the talented point guard is also expected to play a major role in the Opals’ future.  

The qualifying tournament is from the 10-13th of February 2020 and the World Cup in Sydney will start on the 23rd of September 2022.