My experience with Great Britain Women’s Basketball can only be described as a roller coaster ride to say the least.
When I was first asked to write this blog I was hesitant because I feel its not about me, an individual player. Basketball is a team sport, but then I thought to myself that a team is made up of individuals who need to individually perform and add their our significant touch to the team.
Basketball to some extent is my life and it’s been a part of me since I was young. It's definitely one of the few constant things in my life, jobs, friends, etc come and go but I have always had basketball in my life to turn to.
I can remember my first time being selected for GB in 2010 and I was so proud and so excited. It’s been a fun yet nerve wracking journey but all the hard work, dedication, blood, sweat, tears, sore body, aching joints have been well worth it and has finally paid off. Not many people can say they were cut from a team several times and now I am on the leadership team and starting five. I am at a point in my career where the game feels easy again to me. I put that down to all the years of hard work that I’ve put in and it feels great.
Staying disciplined, eating right, exercising twice a day and with the support of my family and friends who stuck behind me with words of encouragement to keep fighting.
The first few seasons at GB were definitely hard and tough. Going to camp every year knowing I wasn’t going to get selected because of a technicality, (rules state you can only have 1 naturalised player), but I’m glad I did it because I got to know the girls and play/train with them and learn about them which has helped me now. They trust and believe in me and my talents and that’s an awesome feeling. I’ve actually enjoyed camp the past couple of years.
Basketball to me is just more than putting the ball in the hoop. It’s about building a chemistry on and off the court. Making friends for life, having fun, getting away from all the “real world problems.” It’s a place of comfort and familiarity. But don’t get me wrong I love the game and I love to win as much as the next person. I am probably one of the most competitive people around and people always say “you can’t win all the time” and my reply “why not?” if I work hard I probably can. To me basketball is a simple game that so many people complicate. You either win or lose it’s no moral victories in the game.
With that said I believe today this is the attitude of our Great Britain Women’s Basketball Team. We are passed the rebuilding of women’s basketball. We are contenders now. With a great mix of young talented players and savvy veterans we should be able to make some noise in the years Eurobaskets. Teams will look at the schedule and now say oh no we are facing Great Britain in our group. This Eurobasket we are hoping to be as exciting and victorious as the last Eurobaskets in France. After finishing 5th in our second round group at Eurobasket Women 2013 and narrowly missing out on a quarter-final place, we are hungry as a team, hungry for success and more victories.
This year hopefully will be the greatest year for success for GB women’s basketball team. We hope to go further and deeper into the tournament this year. We have a great hard nosed and gritty work ethic so we will go as far as we allow ourselves to if we stay together as a team and perform as a team I see us surprising some people and upsetting some teams this year.