Jade Melbourne selected in Opals squad for Olympic qualifiers

December 13, 2023 | UC Capitals news

UC Capitals co-captain, Jade Melbourne, has been named in the Australian Opals extended squad ahead of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying tournament in February where the team will hope to secure their spot at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Despite being part of the senior squad for the last three years, the significance of the latest call up never fades off for Jade.

“It still feels surreal, I think it will forever. Representing Australia is the highest honour, and I think the pinnacle in basketball so any time I get named in a squad I still celebrate it a little bit and get excited about it,” she said.


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The squad will be narrowed down next month from 20 to a 12-player roster who will travel to Brazil to play in Group A against the host nation, Germany and Serbia from February 8 to 11.

“I’m just going to try do everything I can now to make sure I’m on that plane to Brazil. Paris is the ultimate goal so anything I can do between now and then, I’m going to try and make it happen,” Jade said.

Her inclusion in the Olympic squad would top off an impressive year for Jade, as well as make a lifelong dream come true.

“When you’re in prep you write down your goals and going to the Olympics was one of them. Probably didn’t know what sport it was back then but by grade 1 grade 2, I figured out it was going to be basketball. To see it in the sights and be in contention for the team – it’s pretty exciting stuff,” she said.

Across the Caps first eight games this season, Jade has been averaging 15.6 points per game and is second in the league for assists with 7.8 per game.

Her best performance came in round 3 against the Sydney Flames where she scored a personal best 31 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists.


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Caps coach, Kristen Veal, said it’s no surprise the form that Jade has been in for the Caps and knows she’ll do well at taking that into the national team.

“She checks all the boxes for an amazing international player and an amazing domestic player – she’s just a professional. She works hard, she does all the little things, she’s talented, she’s driven so all the things that make great players, she has,” Veal said.

Jade’s last inclusion in the Opals squad was in June 2022 when she joined the team in New York ahead of the FIBA Women’s World Cup. Her last tournament with the senior squad was at the 2021 FIBA Women’s Asia Cup where she picked up a bronze medal.