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No basketball for Jackson until mid-2014
Melissa Woods
15:21 AEST Wed Mar 27 2013

The Canberra Capitals are supportive of Lauren Jackson's decision not to play in the WNBL this year if it means she prolongs her stellar basketball career.

The Capitals were initially hopeful that the injured four-time Olympian would alter the terms of her lucrative contract and reunite with coach Carrie Graf next season, starting in October.

The side finished second last in the recently completed 2012/13 season without their star forward.

Jackson signed a unique $1 million three-season, five-year deal and wasn't scheduled to play for the Capitals in the 2013-14 season.

But given she didn't play at all in the first season of her contract because of a serious hamstring injury, they were desperate for her to suit up.

However the 31-year-old has confirmed she won't play until May 2014 when she runs out for her American WNBA club Seattle Storm, also skipping their upcoming season.

Jackson said she was already back running but, after 12 straight years in the physical WNBA and 15 years as a professional player, she needed more time out.

She said she was physically and emotionally exhausted after leading the Australian team to bronze at the London Olympics, where she was the flag-bearer.

As well as her rehabilitation, Jackson is enjoying her time away from the court as she completes a BA in gender studies.

Basketball ACT chief executive Tony Jackson (no relation) said while they were disappointed that Jackson wouldn't be involved, they had to take a long-term view.

He said that Jackson may be looking at playing on to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

"We would very much like her to consider playing in Canberra next season and we have made a formal request but if she says no, that's the terms of the agreement," said Mr Jackson.

"There is an agreement in place that quite clearly spells out when she's available to play so I can only expect her to honour that contract.

"Our greatest priority is to make sure that Lauren is fit and able to play long-term so we have to accept that."


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