Belarus guard Lindsay Harding has admitted that her playing time in all forms of basketball is nearly at an end following the Eastern European nation’s 74-66 loss to Australia at the Rio Olympics.
The number one pick in the 2007 WNBA Draft failed to make the cut for the USA squad at the London 2012 Olympics and eventually took Belorussian citizenship in 2015, leading them to the Olympics via the FIBA Qualification Tournament in Nantes in early June.
It would be the country’s first Olympic appearance since the Beijing Games of 2008.
The Belarus team were eager to get their campaign under way – they were the first women’s basketball team to arrive in Brazil – but when in Rio could only manage a 1-4 record in Group A, eliminating them from quarter-final contention.
Harding did not join her team-mates immediately due to the late-running WNBA season, something that Belarus team captain Nataliya Trafimaya admitted was normal in a pre-Rio interview to UK media site MVP.
Maybe the Mobile, Alabama native was upset that she would not be in the quarter-finals and on her way to possibly facing her home country in the latter rounds. Maybe Harding said this in the heat of the moment, but the 32-year-old could have played her last game for the Belorussian national side.
“I am glad that I had the opportunity to play, we got excited to get here, we compete,” Harding said following Belarus’ loss to the Australian Opals. “That’s frustrating, but in the end, it was a great experience.”
When asked about her future, Harding added: “I don’t know what my future with the national team will be. I am getting close to the end of playing basketball.”
In her five games at the Rio 2016 Olympics, Harding averaged 13.8 points, four rebounds and five assists.