Two-time defending champions USA opened their FIBA women's World Cup 2022 campaign with a group stage victory against Belgium by 15 points on Thursday morning. During the game, no player in the Team USA wore the jersey with number 15 to honor Brittney Griner, who was sentenced to nine years in Russian jail for drug possession and smuggling charges.
USA have won 10 titles in the FIBA women's World Cup and Brittney Griner was the part of the squad in last two title victories.
USA took to Twitter to reveal the players with their respective jersey numbers and wrote, "The 🇺🇸 #USABWNT team numbers are in. USA Basketball continues to keep BG in our thoughts as we take the court in Sydney. In her honor, no U.S. player will wear BG’s No. 15 in this competition. #WeAreBG"
The United States women's basketball team defeated debutant Belgium 87-72 in their opener. USA are placed in Group A alongside, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, China, Puerto Rico, and South Korea in the FIBA women's World Cup 2022.
Griner's teammates and other WNBA stars are not considering to participate in Russia in the offseason instead opted to play for other European teams.
Apart from Belgium, Latvia and Puerto Rico are the other two teams making their debut in the women's basketball world cup.