Opals will shine right around the country from today when the new Cygnett WNBL season tips off for 2023-24.
From Perth to Townsville, Sydney and Canberra to Melbourne and Adelaide, Seven Consulting Opals will take to the floor and be looking to capture crucial form and momentum in the lead up to next year’s Paris Olympic Games.
Opals captain Tess Madgen and her national team mate Cayla George, fresh from winning a WNBA title with the Las Vegas Aces this month, have made the move from Melbourne Boomers to the Hoops Capital where they will represent the Sydney Flames.
Fellow Flames recruits Lauren Nicholson and Shaneice Swain are also part of the national squad.
There's strong Opals representation at reigning champion Townsville Fire with 2x FIBA World Cup medallist Sami Whitcomb, FIBA Asia Cup bronze medallist, All-Star Five member Alice Kunek and Saffron Shiels (who debuted for the Opals in September’s tour of China) now club team mates with Steph Reid and Zitina Aokuso.
In the nation’s capital, Jade Melbourne is the biggest name in town and returns to the Caps and the WNBL after competing her rookie WNBA season with Seattle Storm.
Out west, 2023 FIBA Asia Cup bronze medallists Anneli Maley and Amy Atwell will now share the court in the Perth Lynx uniform.
Young gun Isobel Borlase, coming off a stunning #WNBL23 where she won both Betty Watson Breakout Player of the Year and Sixth Woman of the Year awards, will continue to grow her game with Adelaide Lighting.
The Lightning skipper and 2022 FIBA World Cup bronze medallist and All-Star Five selection Steph Talbot continues her recovery from an ACL injury with Paris in her sights.
In Victoria, Tokyo Olympian Sara Blicavs and FIBA Asia Cup bronze medallist Keely Froling are headline inclusions at the Melbourne Boomers while Maddy Rocci (Asia Cup bronze medallist) and teen sensation Nyadiew Puouch (who debuted for the Opals during a five-game tour of China in September) will be looking to guide the Southside Flyers to another Grand Final series appearance.
Australian Gangurrus squad members will also be in action across the league including Maley and Miela Goodchild (Perth), Ally Wilson (Bendigo Spirit), Lauren Mansfield (Adelaide Lightning) and Emma Clarke (Sydney) as the 3x3 program strives towards competing at an Olympics for the first time in Paris.