Ben Simmons will not be matching up against Team USA this summer.

Basketball Australia released a statement Sunday saying that Simmons will not play in the team's exhibition games leading into the FIBA World Cup.

Simmons had previously announced that he won't be participating in the World Cup as he prioritizes preparing for the upcoming season with the Sixers, but he'd been planning to play in the exhibition games in Australia.

"With our focus being to win a medal at the 2020 Olympics, the Boomers' preparation in the lead up to the world championships is of the utmost importance and me not playing allows the team to create the chemistry they need to compete at the highest level and qualify for the Olympics," Simmons said in the statement, per The Age's Roy Ward

The Australian team has games scheduled on Aug. 16 and Aug. 17 in Perth against Team Canada, and on Aug. 22 and Aug. 24 in Melbourne against Team USA.

Jonah Bolden will feature for the Australians. Tobias Harris has withdrawn from Team USA, while rookie Marial Shayok was one of 29 players invited to the Canadian team's training camp. 

The FIBA World Cup begins in China on Aug. 31, with Team USA's first game on Sep. 1 against the Czech Republic. The Americans play the Turkish national team on Sep. 3. Furkan Korkmaz, who starred for Turkey in World Cup European qualifiers last summer, is on the team's 26-man preliminary roster. 

 

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