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Sergio Rodriguez (Spain)

MADRID (Olympics) - Sergio Rodriguez has been named in Spain's 13-man preliminary squad for the London Games.

The Real Madrid point guard hasn't played for the national side since EuroBasket 2007 in Madrid, when Spain lost to Russia in the gold medal game at the buzzer.

Rodriguez was a star on the rise when he made his senior team bow with Spain at the 2006 FIBA World Championship as Spain captured the gold medal.

At the time, he played for Estudiantes in Spain's ACB but then moved to the NBA's Portland Trail Blazers.

In several seasons in the NBA, where he also played for Sacramento and New York, Rodriguez's career did not take off as many expected.

He decided to come back to Spain and play for Real Madrid before the 2010-11 season but didn't have a breakout year until the 2011-12 campaign when helping the club win the Copa del Rey and then reach the Liga Endesa Finals, where they lost in a best-of-five game series to Barcelona.

Rafa Martinez, who had another strong season with Valencia Basket and helped them reach the Eurocup Final, is also in the preliminary squad.

Otherwise, the group consists of 11 of the 12 players that captured a gold medal at last year's EuroBasket in Lithuania.

The only omission is Ricky Rubio, who suffered a serious knee injury earlier this year while playing for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Jose Luis Saez, the Spanish Basketball Federation president, said: "The Olympic Games are always different. Rather than value the group or the teams we will face, we have to think that the national team that will represent the country is at the level of the best.

"We will go to London without fear, but with the maximum respect of all the rivals that we will face on our journey."

On Friday, 29 June, Spain's players will be presented at the Triángulo de Oro de Madrid after several days of training in the capital city, the squad will begin touring Spain.

They will have games in Valladolid, Madrid, Salamanca, Granada, Málaga and A Coruña.

Spain preliminary squad for Olympic Basketball Tournament: José Manuel Calderón, Sergio Rodríguez, Víctor Sada, Juan Carlos Navarro, Sergio Llull, Rudy Fernández, Fernando San Emeterio, Víctor Claver, Felipe Reyes, Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol, Serge Ibaka and Rafa Martínez.


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