By Eurohoops team / email@example.com
After a great season with Partizan Mozzart Bet, Mathias Lessort moved to Panathinaikos and had an overall eventful but stressful summer.
He was set to participate with the French National Team at the 2023 FIBA World Cup, but the 27-year-old center got injured just at the start of preparations with Les Bleus.
“It was quite stressful because up until the last second, I wasn’t sure what would happen. But we managed to get the green light from the club and the doctors. I can’t wait to be able to play with them. I always believed I would make it, and that’s why I worked until the end, but it was stressful because I thought, ‘I hope I haven’t done all this for nothing.’ I made a lot of back-and-forth trips to Athens,” Lessort said to Amaury Perdriau from L’Equipe.
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The French big man injured his ankle and missed all the preparatory games, but Vincent Collet eagerly awaited him until the last moment. And it worked.
“Everyone knows what was wrong, my left ankle, it lasted almost the entire preparation. I’m back on my feet, I trained all week, I played in practice matches, I didn’t have any pain, so it’s positive for the future.”
Lessort also revealed he had great support during difficult times this summer and is ready to fight for the French shirt at the upcoming World Cup.
“It’s nice that the coach took risks to have me here, to see that everyone was pushing for me to be here, asking about my progress, and excited to see me back. It’s satisfying to know that you’re anticipated and wanted. The fact that the coach took that risk has made me even more eager to attend the World Cup. It’s the icing on the cake after the emotionally charged season I’ve had,” the Panathinaikos big man said, BeBasket reports.
Alongside Lessort, France will be represented at the World Cup by Nicolas Batum, Nando De Colo, Isaïa Cordinier, Moustapha Fall, Evan Fournier, Sylvain Francisco, Rudy Gobert, Elie Okobo, Yakuba Ouattara, Terry Tarpey, and Guerschon Yabusele. They will initially compete against Canada, Latvia, and Lebanon in Group H, to be played at the Indonesia Arena in Jakarta.