Georgia Jones will be patched up and eager to go on Thursday in Belgrade.

No injury to report ahead of a EuroBasket quarter-final with Hungary, it should be confirmed. The Great Britain guard is as healthy as she’s ever been.

All thanks, she reveals, to sporting what to the uneducated appears like a slightly over-sized plaster on her left arm.

Instead, micro-technology of the highest order – a Freestyle patch – that has allowed the 29-year-old to manage her diabetes better than ever before after first developing the condition at the age of seven.

“It’s not easy,” she confirms. “Stuff like this, having new technology. It makes a big difference. I’ve had this for the last few years now. It would be a lot more difficult without it.

“It tells which direction my glucose is moving in. I don’t have to use blood any more. I can swipe a sensor and it gives me an automatic number. Instead of pricking my finger and doing a blood reading, it tells me instantly. It’s a lot better.”

The diabetic symptoms range from the unpleasant to severe. Fatigue. Thirst. Stress. Just two aspects which run counter to the needs of elite athletes.

Many have coped, most famously legendary tennis player Billy-Jean King and legendarily relentless rower Steve Redgrave.

The rigours of seven games in ten days would test anyone, even without the proper processes in place.

“It’s tough, not going to lie,” Jones confirms. “You just have to be on top of it. Change of food, different schedules every day.

“You just have to stay on top of it and get what you need at the right time. But I’ve been doing this a long time so I’m used to the sporadic nature of it.”

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Jones – part of the Manchester-based dynasty that also includes Dad Jeff (her coach at Manchester Mystics) and brothers Calum and James – is also well-accustomed to forming one part of a renowned basketball collective.

Throw in fiancée Jamell Anderson, whom she will wed this time next year, and the troop will soon be enlarged.

However this GB group, she reveals, shares all the characteristics of a family. One of their strengths: unity of purpose, shared between starters and a bench mob that has been the silent part of their assassination strategy.

“In a tournament like this when you go back to back, it helps that you can rotate players,” she acknowledges. “And it helps that everybody is buying into that philosophy as well. You come in. you do your job. You get out.

“That energy as well, getting a stop, diving on the floor, those are the things which are bringing this team together. It’s really good that we can get bench players and starters doing that.”

We can compete with Hungary, with anyone, she claims. Nothing is impossible now.

Even if there has only been a murmur of notice taken by the British public at large, success over the next five days in Belgrade could be transformative.

Jones, who now doubles up as marketing manager at Basketball England, will be one of those tasked with capitalising with her employers planning an initiative targeted at girls.

That inspiration factor could make her life all the simpler.

“Every time we step on the court, we have that on our minds,” she affirms. “We just want to get the results and do well and increase that exposure for British basketball.

“We’re trying to do that for everyone, not just ourselves. It would be great if we could do it for us. But also for basketball as a whole.”

Photo: Mansoor Ahmed

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