American Basketball Player Joins Team Russia After Accepting Citizenship
Anthony Nesmith / ZUMAPRESS / TASS
An American basketball player is set to become the third U.S. citizen to play for the Russian women's team after accepting Russian citizenship.
Point guard Jamierra Faulkner, 26, joined UMMC Yekaterinburg earlier this month after stints in Poland, Israel and America’s WNBA. Faulkner was naturalized as a Russian citizen by presidential decree shortly before joining the club, following the paths of Epiphanny Prince and Becky Hammon.
“We will call up Jamierra to our next team training session,” the general manager of Russia’s national quad Svetlana Abrosimova told the Iz.ru news website on Thursday.
Faulkner is expected to join Russia’s national team for the last two 2019 FIBA Eurobasket qualifying matches this November, according to Iz.ru.
UMMC Yekaterinburg director Maxim Ryabkov lauded Faulkner’s career and called her “one of the most talented” point guards in the WNBA who had not joined the U.S. or other national teams.
Faulkner netted 4 points, made 5 assists and 5 steals in her debut with UMMC Yekaterinburg off the bench on March 10.