BELGRADE, Serbia — Borisa Simanic, the Serbian player who needed a kidney removed during the Fiba World Cup, was released from a hospital in the Philippines and was able to join his team for the medal celebration money in Belgrade.
Simanic told Radio Belgrade that he must rest for three months, after which the process of determining whether he can play basketball again will begin. Doctors who treated Simanic in Manila believe it is possible the 25-year-old striker could resume his career.
Simanic was injured in the opening match against South Sudan on August 30. He was elbowed in the side as a South Sudanese player tried to get around him to shoot near the basket. Simanic needed emergency surgery that night to stop internal bleeding and resolve other problems, then doctors performed a second surgery to remove the kidney on September 3 after determining how badly the organ was damaged.
Serbia kept Simanic’s jersey draped over a chair for the remainder of the tournament as a tribute. The team reached the gold medal game losing to Germany. Simanic scored three points in about 20 minutes off the Serbian bench in three World Cup games.
The event was a great celebration of sport in Serbia.
Novak Djokovic, who won his 24th Grand Slam title on Sunday by winning the US Open, also joined the basketball team on stage to be feted by thousands of fellow Serbians. Also on stage: Serbian Nikola Jokic, who led the Denver Nuggets to the NBA title last season but opted out of the World Cup.
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