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Last Updated: Friday, 18 August 2006, 08:50 GMT 09:50 UK
France suffer Parker injury blow
Tony Parker
Parker will return to San Antonio to recover from his injury
France have suffered a major blow to their World Championship hopes after NBA All Star Tony Parker was ruled out of the tournament with a freak injury.

The San Antonio guard broke a finger after catching it on an opponent's shirt in France's final warm-up match.

Parker first thought he would miss the opener against Argentina, but an X-ray revealed the injury to be more serious.

French coach Claude Bergeaud said: "Tony wanted to play but I didn't feel it was worth taking the risk."

He added: "He will not be playing in the tournament and will return to San Antonio to recover from the injury."

Parker has been replaced in the France team by Mamoutou Diarra.

France are expected to be one of the main challengers for a gold medal at the tournament in Japan, with the United States, Argentina and Spain also in contention.



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