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Lithuania’s national basketball team, ranked number three in the world, launched their preparations for the 2016 Olympics at Lithuania’s most popular seaside resort Palanga.
Jonas Valančiūnas
© DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

National coach Jonas Kazlauskas kicked off the national team's first training camp with 11 of the 20 players from the country's preliminary squad for the upcoming Olympics including veterans Robertas Javtokas,

Renaldas Seibutis, Antanas Kavaliauskas and Arturas Milaknis.
NBA stars Jonas Valanciunas and Donatas Motiejunas are included in Lithuania’s 20-man squad for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro along with rising star Domantas Sabonis.

Mindaugas Kuzminskas, a key player in the Lithuania side that reached the EuroBasket 2015 Final to qualify for the Olympics, joined the national team midweek.

Mindaugas Kuzminskas, a key player in the Lithuania side that reached the EuroBasket 2015 Final to qualify for the Olympics, joined the national team in midweek.

Lithuania are not at full strength but will stay play two friendly games in Klaipeda against New Zealand on June 29 and against Tunisia on July 1 giving fringe players hoping to boost their chances of making the Olympic squad an opportunity to prove they are worthy of a place in the finals squad.

Lithuania hope to be closer to full strength when they host an international tournament including Venezuela (10 July) in Vilnius, the Netherlands (12 July) in Alytus and Belarus (14 July) in Kedainiai followed up by a match-up against their arch-rivals Spain, who beat them in last year’s EuroBasket final, on July 18 in Kaunas with a return match in Malaga on July 20.

Lithuania will leave Europe and continue their preparations in Buenos Aires where they will meet Australia on July 25 and then Argentina on July 27, with a return game against Australia in Sao Paolo on July 30 and then a match-up with either Olympic hosts Brazil or China the following day.

Lithuania will compete in Group B at the Rio Olympics with Argentina, Brazil, Spain, Nigeria and a team that wins one of the three qualifiers.