Top women to watch at FIBA 3x3 World Cup Qualifier 2023
EILAT (Israel) - 3x3's wonder women will be putting on a show at the FIBA 3x3 World Cup Qualifier in Eilat, Israel, on May 6-7.
Twelve teams - six in each gender - will compete for the last three men's and women's tickets to the FIBA 3x3 World Cup 2023, which will take place in Vienna, Austria, on May 30-June 6.
Let's look at the top women's players in Eilat.
Karolina Sotolova (Czech Republic)
This speedy 23-year-old has shone before at the international level and on the FIBA 3x3 Women's Series, where she loves nothing more than putting on a show.
Sotolova was spectacular at times during the FIBA 3x3 Nations League 2022, but is ready to make her mark amongst the best.
To do that she'll want to lead Czech Republic to a ticket to Vienna, where Sotolova can prove herself on the big stage.
That's the plan if everything goes right in Eilat.
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Hadar Hadad (Israel)
The 24-year-old was part of Israel's campaign at FIBA 3x3 World Cup 2022 and she's keen to do everything she can to return to the grand stage.
The bright lights of the World Cup was a tough initiation for Hadad but an experience she'll be much better for.
She's already made her mark on the Women's Series having helped Israel finish third at last year's Poitiers Stop.
The 5ft. 7in (1.7m) Hadad is an inside and out threat and if she can get on a roll then the home fans in Eilat will have a new hero.
Meline Franchina (Switzerland)
The 24-year-old has superstar written all over her. We've seen glimpses of what this Swiss Miss has to offer with Franchina part of Switzerland's impressive quarter-final run at FIBA 3x3 Europe Cup 2022.
The towering 6ft (1.84m) can dominate the paint like she's a 3x3 Picasso and provides Switzerland with an inside presence to make them confident of booking a ticket to Vienna.
Alex Wilson/Marena Whittle (Australia)
Australia are arguably the team to beat in Eilat and boast two stars from their crushing win at the FIBA 3x3 Asia Cup 2023.
With strength and determination, Whittle dominates the paint - especially the boards - but don't think she's just a one-trick pony. The 5ft. 11in (1.8m) Whittle also has the shooter's touch and plays mean D.
She will cause opponents nightmares alongside super athletic Wilson, who was a standout at the Asia Cup.
Still relatively new to 3x3, she seems born for the half-court and - much like Whittle - she can do it all whether it's playing lockdown D, nailing a dagger from the logo - which she did to win the Asia Cup title - or making a hustle play.
There might not be a better duo than these two awesome Aussies.
Harisoa Hajanirina (Madagascar)
Another young gun on the list is this exciting 24-year-old, who is one of the most hyped prospects in Africa.
The lightning quick Hajanirina was a key part of Madagascar's silver medal run at FIBA 3x3 Africa Cup 2022 and she'll take that confidence into leading her country in Eilat.
The 5ft. 9in (1.76m) Hajanirina can do a little bit of everything, including putting the Wilson on the floor and making a hard drive to the rack.
Don't be surprised if she lights up Eilat.
Carolina Lopez (Colombia)
You may have seen this 24-year-old dynamo at FIBA 3x3 AmeriCup 2022. If so then no doubt you were left in awe over her ability to deliver a sick dish as Lopez helped set the table for Colombia's deep run in Miami.
The 5ft. 8in (1.73m) Lopez can also be a certified bucket getter when she wants to making her undisputedly one of the players to watch in Eilat.