Opals discover Olympic qualifying rivals

The Opals will face France, Puerto Rico and Brazil in their Olympic qualifying pool in February

The Australian Opals will be confident of sealing a passage to next year's Olympic basketball tournament based on the draw for the official qualifying round.

Sandy Brondello's side have been pitted against world No. 27 Puerto Rico, 15th-ranked Brazil and world No.5 France for the playoffs, with the latter country hosting their section of the draw in Bourges between February 6-9.

As the world No.2-ranked side, Australia's women - the 2018 World Cup silver medallists - carried a No.1 seeding into the draw.

They now just need to finish in the top three of their pool to lock in their passage to the Games in Japan in July.

In all, there will be 16 nations taking part in the official FIBA qualifying round although the United States as World Cup champions and Japan, as hosts, are already assured of their Games berths.

That leaves 14 teams still to battle it out for the final 10 spots, with the other qualifying venues in February being Belgrade (Serbia), Foshan (China) and Ostend (Belgium).

The Opals reached the qualifiers after coming through pre-qualifying earlier this month in Kuala Lumpur.

The Australian Boomers men's team have already qualified for the Olympics as the highest-placed Oceania team of the 2019 Basketball World Cup.

They will be mentored in Japan by returning coach Brett Brown, who replaced Andrej Lemanis this week.

Hosts Japan, Nigeria, Argentina, the United States, Iran, France and Spain have also book their passage.

For those still fighting to make it to Japan, the four men's qualifying tournaments will take place from June 23-28 in Canada, Croatia, Lithuania and Serbia.

OLYMPIC WOMEN'S QUALIFIERS:

Games to be played February 6-9 (World ranking in brackets)

Format: Round-robin at each site, top three finishers qualify for the Olympics with the exception of the US and Japan, which already are in the Tokyo field.

Bourges, France: France (5), Australia (2), Brazil (15), Puerto Rico (23).

Belgrade Serbia: Serbia (7), US (1), Nigeria (17), Mozambique (43).

Foshan, China China (8), Spain (3), Britain (18), Korea (19).

Ostende, Belgium: Belgium (9), Canada (8), Japan (10), Sweden (22).