A former Opals captain has revealed precisely what was stated throughout their Olympics coaching camp that sparked Liz Cambage’s bitter exit.
Former Opals captain Jenna O’Hea says Liz Cambage won’t ever play for Australia once more and confirmed the taunt uttered throughout a pre-Olympics scrimmage that sparked her bitter break up from the nationwide staff.
Cambage missed Australia’s 2021 Olympic marketing campaign in Tokyo, pulling out of the squad citing psychological well being causes following alleged incidents throughout a coaching camp — together with a blow-up with Nigeria throughout observe and allegations of breaking the staff’s bio-secure bubble in Las Vegas.
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An investigation by Basketball Australia noticed Cambage issued with a proper reprimand and the Opals by no means recovered from her late withdrawal, as they bombed out of the Olympics within the quarter-finals.
Last week Cambage, who’s taking part in her first season with the Los Angeles Sparks within the WNBA, hit out on the Opals, telling the ABC she “never” felt supported and guarded whereas within the nationwide staff.
Asked to reply to these claims whereas showing on ABC’s Offsiders program on Sunday, O’Hea stated: “I can hold my head up high and say that I always loved her, always cared for her, always supported her, always had her back.
“I think that is her reality and I think listeners and watchers out there can believe who they want to believe.
“But I can hold my head up high.”
Offsiders host Kellie Underwood then spoke in regards to the incident with Nigeria, asking for affirmation from O’Hea about what truly occurred.
Underwood: “It’s never really emerged what happened but I’ve had it confirmed from a few sources. Is it correct that you were playing Nigeria and Liz Cambage had her feathers ruffled and she turned to them and said, ‘Go back to your third world country’?
“Of course, (Australian basketballer) Ezi Magbegor is originally Nigerian, a Nigerian who’s now living in Australia and playing for your team. And as a result there was a brawl that erupted, and since then you haven’t spoken to her?”
O’Hea: “That is all 100 per cent correct.”
Caroline Wilson: “Will she ever play for Australia again do you think?”
Elaborating on the scenario with Cambage, O’Hea added: “I really want the media to focus on those players who want to be Opals and who want to represent Australia and who are really dedicated to Australia and I think that’s really important.
“Everyone has done more than enough (to try and keep Cambage playing for Australia). We have sacrificed a lot to try and keep her in the program. You know, she doesn’t want to be here anymore and that’s her choice and we need to move on without her.”
Cambage appeared to reply to reviews of O’Hea’s revelations in a single day Sunday, tweeting: “The truth will always come to light, and it ain’t even dawn yet.”
In July final 12 months, Cambage referred to as out “lies” that had surrounded her Olympic withdrawal, saying she was at “breaking point” together with her psychological well being earlier than deciding to tug the pin.
“I’m pretty annoyed at all the fake news and the lies I’m seeing floating around in news articles and being shown and being asked about,” she stated in an Instagram video on the time.
“Yeah, things got heated in the Nigeria game. There was a physical altercation and there were words exchanged but I’m hearing things that aren’t true at all, flying around from people in Australia and America which is crazy.
“Everything that happened and everything that was said is on film. I know what happened and I do not appreciate the lies and people constantly trying to tear me down. Hating on me won’t bring you love, at all.”
O’Hea stated earlier this month she remains to be but to maneuver on totally from the drama surrounding Cambage and the devastating impression it had on the Opals finally 12 months’s Olympics.
“That was huge and everything that surrounded it was really big,” O’Hea informed SEN’s This Is Your Journey.
“To be honest, I saw a sports psych for months afterwards trying to deal with it all and I do think that that’s part of the reason why I have retired.
“It took a huge toll on me and was really difficult … I don’t think I’ll ever fully process it to be honest.
“It’s still pretty raw. I don’t talk about it very often unless it’s with my sports psych. If you asked me a couple of months ago, I would have been in a ball of tears.
“It’s going to take time for me. Everyone heals at a different rate and gets over things in a different way, so that’s something I’m still dealing with today.
“I think it’s going to take a lot more time.”