This morning the draw for this years World Cup U19 took place. Holland will make its first appearance in the tournament after coming in 8th in last years U17 tournament.
The tournament will take place from 18 untill 28 july. This being just a few days after the Europeans for U20 finals will mean normally no players from the U20 squads will tie their laces again in Lithuania. Klaipeda will be the place for group A and B while Panevezys will host groups C and D. All final stages will take place in Klaipeda
The first three teams of each group will go to the final stages.
Group A: Brazil, Serbia, Korea, Russia
The Russians seem to be the highly favoured team to win group B with sizzling pointguard Ksenia Levchenko leading the way, although shes only from 1996. Brazil wil look for revanche after a disappointing U17 Worlds last year. They will likely bring back Izabella Sangalli and Carla Lucchini.
Group B: Argentina, Japan, Spain, Australia
Strong teams in Group B where Japan and Spain are two of the final four out of last years U17! Argentina will feature some of the female heirs to Manu Ginobli while Australia will look for a way to avoid early elimination with their exciting pointguards Tiana Mengakahia and Vanessa Panousis at the reigns of the team.
Group C: Canada, France, Netherlands, Senegal
The Dutch coaches will be quite satisfied with the results of the draft. Canada proved to be a little stronger in last years WorldCup with a little edge on the physique (the Caron Goudreau twins) while France, led by the stunning likes of Lidija Turcinovic and Olivia Epoupa will be the main contender for top spot in this group. The Dutch will be able to add shooter Yordi Kathmann and powerforward Kourtney Treffers to lastyears roster, filling in for the major voids that hampered their exploits in Amsterdam 2012. Senegal is the dark horse for this group and looks to be the most logical team to be eliminated
Mali, USA, Lithuania, China Well hello there Team USA! You seem to have drawn a breeze for the first stage of the tournament. Games versus Mali and China will likely be warmups for the team that might bring back rocking stars like Diamond DeShields and Rebecca Greenwell. Not being very familiar with the level of play in China one might think that Mali has a decent chance to make it to the second round. Lithuania will bring players that were in division B U18 last year so if they succeed in making a victory their journey will be a great and satisfying surprise.
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