|28 May 2013|
|Luka Zoric is expected to fly home dunks for Croatia come September|
Croatia head coach Jasmin Repesa made public his 24-strong preliminary squad for EuroBasket 2013 at a press conference in Dubrovnik on Tuesday.
Veteran guards Marko Popovic and Zoran Planinic, who had announced on Sunday their unavailability for the upcoming EuroBasket, are the only big names missing from the squad.
The long list is headlined by four top-level players that play abroad and had brilliant seasons this year in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague with their respective teams.
Winger Bojan Bogdanovic of Fenerbahce Ulker and forward/center Luka Zoric of Unicaja Malaga led their team in scoring in the competition, while center Ante Tomic of FC Barcelona Regal and point guard Roko Leni Ukic of Panathinaikos were their teams' second-leading scorers.
Bogdanovic and Ukic led Croatia in scoring and assists, respectively, during last summer's Qualification Round where Repesa's team finished with a perfect 8-0 record to punch their ticket to September's EuroBasket.
Tomic on the other hand has not suited up for the national team since EuroBasket 2011, which ended with an unceremonious first-round exit for the Croats.
Croatia's preliminary squad also includes two of Europe's brightest young stars in Dario Saric and Mario Hezonja, who had taken second and fourth place, respectively in the FIBA Europe Young Player of the Year 2012 voting.
Repesa also announced that preparations will commence on 20 July and Croatia's first warm-up game will take place on 6 August, against F.Y.R. Of Macedonia.
According to the initial planning, friendly games will conclude as early as 25 August upon the conclusion of a four-nation tournament in Turkey in which Croatia will face the hosts as well as Belgium and Serbia.
EuroBasket 2013 tips off on 4 September and Croatia were drawn in First Round Group C, along with Spain, hosts Slovenia, Georgia, Poland and the Czech Republic.
Croatia EuroBasket 2013 Preliminary Squad:
Roko Leni Ukic, Dontaye Draper, Rok Stipcevic, Ante Delas, Toni Prostran, Marko Tomas, Krunoslav Simon, Bojan Bogdanovic, Mario Hezonja, Fran Pilepis, Ivan Ramljak, Luka Babis, Hrvoje Peric, Damjan Rudez, Dario Saric, Mario Delas, Damir Markota, Leon Radosevic, Miro Bilan, Darko Planinic, Ante Tomic, Luka Žoric, Luksa Andric, Stanko Barac.