Australia's men's basketball medal hopes have been dealt a blow with Toronto Raptors center Aron Baynes ruled out of the remainder of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics with a neck injury.
Baynes sustained the injury in Wednesday's 86-83 win over Italy, where he was monitored in a local hospital afterwards.
The 34-year-old, who had scored 14 points from 14 minutes against Italy, is expected to recover in the coming weeks but will not play any further part in this Olympic competition.
“I am really disappointed that I can’t continue in the Olympics,” Baynes said. “I along with the rest of the team have been working so hard in our quest for an historic Olympic medal and I am gutted that I can’t complete the journey with the boys, but I have every confidence that they will get the job done."
Australia head coach Brian Goorjian added: “Aron is a big part of our team and we are all hurting for him, but we have great depth in our squad and I have every confidence in the 11 remaining players.
"We will all stay focused on the task ahead. Unfortunately, injuries can happen but this team is resilient and we will adapt."
Australia's men's basketball team, the Boomers, have never won an Olympic medal but are considered a strong chance at the Tokyo Olympics.
The Boomers are four-time Olympic semi-finalists but have lost all four bronze medal matches.
Australian Boomer Aron Baynes has been ruled out of any further play at the Olympics with a neck injury. The close knit team have rallied around him. Patty Mills ‘we’ve got Baynesy’s back, we’ll cover for him’. https://t.co/YdTdFJPK1m#Basketball pic.twitter.com/uHCE7RwVS3— Basketball Australia (@BasketballAus) July 30, 2021