ANKARA (FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament Women) – Having had a break from national team duties last summer, legendary Czech Republic guard Hana Horakova could barely be happier playing for her country again and trying to realise yet another Olympic dream.
The veteran star opted out of EuroBasket Women but is back on the global stage having provided the inspiration for a glorious silver medal at the FIBA World Championship Women two years ago on home soil – a contribution which also resulted in her being crowned MVP.
The fact she has pretty much seen and done it all during her prestigious career certainly hasn’t diluted her excitement or desire when it comes to making it to London.
And, if her team does live up to their status as one of the favourites to make it to the British capital, Horakova is confident they will be equipped to compete and be a challenger.
“I am just so happy to be back again because I am enjoying the responsibility" smiled Horakova.
“It's such a nice atmosphere within the team and they are all really good people to play with.
“To possibly advance to the Olympics is a very big excitement for me.
“Even if it would be my third Games, it is still the highest level of basketball I can reach"
She continued, “Many players have changed over the years, this is true. And, because of the fact I did not play last summer, I can now see the progress of the team and the improvement of individual players.
“I think this team still has the same kind of strengths and power as we have had during previous Olympic years" added the veteran.
Horakova contributed seven points, nine rebounds and four assists to help Czech Republic take a first step towards London with a comfortable 70-51 opening day win against New Zealand.