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Israel's basketball star Casspi returns

    Sacramento Kings star Omri Casspi has pledged that he will play for Israel in the Euro 2011 qualifiers.

    The first Israeli in the NBA, Casspi, 21, will return to the national squad after missing last year’s European Championships.

    Casspi said: “The NBA season ends in the spring so the timing is right to play for Israel in the summer. I could not play for the team last year because it would have messed up my preparations for the NBA.”

    The 6ft 8” forward has consolidated his reputation as one of the NBA’s best young stars. He has scored more than 20 points in each of his last four games including a career-best 24 points in the 113-109 defeat to the Phoenix Suns, and 23 points as the Kings lost on the buzzer to the LA Lakers 109-108. He has a three year contract with the Kings worth $3.5 million.

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