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Huge Com Games blow with star Opal sidelined

SARA Blicavs’ hopes of representing the Opals at next year’s Commonwealth Games have been dashed, with the star Aussie basketballer rupturing her ACL in the WNBL on the weekend.

Scans on Monday confirmed the severity of the injury, with Blicavs now set to be sidelined from the basketball court for up to 12 months.

Not only will Blicavs miss the rest of 2017-18 WNBL season, she’ll also miss next year’s Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, where she was a strong chance to be included in Australia’s starting line-up.

Blicavs landed awkwardly on her right knee late in the first half between her Dandenong Ranges and Adelaide Lightning at Dandenong Stadium on Friday night.

The star forward and charismatic character was helped from the court and couldn’t play any further part in the match, with Ranges coach Larissa Anderson admitting after the game that Blicavs’ injury “flattened everybody”.

The Ranges confirmed the news via a statement, saying that Blicavs would commence her recovery on Monday night “with a very capable orthopedic surgery team”.

“Everyone within the Dandenong Basketball family would like to wish Sara the best of luck in her recovery journey and will be behind her offering our support at every step of her return to the basketball court,” the statement read.

“Always the brightest and bubbliest personality in the room, Sara’s absence will definitely be felt for the rest of WNBL18, but we have full confidence that she will return stronger and better than ever in the very near future.”

Blicavs was part of the Opals’ squad that qualified for the Rio Olympics in 2016.

The 24-year-old had been among Dandenong’s leading point-scorers in the WNBL so far this season, averaging 14.3 per outing, along with career-high rebounds (6.8) and assists (2.8).

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