BASKETBALL — 19 December 2013


By Peter Argent

In the build-up to the 2014 FIBA World Championship for women for the Jayco Australian Opals, Williamstown lass Tess Madgen has been named in a 21-player squad for first training camp of the New Year in Canberra next month.

The squad features players from all nine WNBL teams, with Madgen now a captain of Melbourne Boomers and one of the elite players in the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL).

Excited to begin the journey to Turkey and the FIBA World Championships, coach Joyce said he is looking forward to working with the WNBL’s best at the Basketball Australia National Centre of Excellence next month.

“This camp is a great opportunity for these younger players and players on the fringe of the Opals program to come in a get the chance to impress and put their names up for consideration,” Joyce said.

“The camp gives us the opportunity to introduce our style of play and expose players to what the Opals are about from a strategic and cultural point of view.”

Joyce said the emergence of the likes of Kelly Wilson should provide players on the fringes with added confidence and desire.

“When we brought in Kelly Wilson, who hadn’t played for Australia since the 2007 World University Games, it created a lot of excitement, a lot of enthusiasm in the group and depth,” Joyce said.

“The addition of new players created healthy competition within the team and that helps create an environment where everyone is pushing each other to improve.”

The Melbourne Boomers’ amazing start to the WNBL season has not gone unnoticed, with Rebecca Allen joining Rachel Jarry and Madgen in the squad.

The Jayco Australian Opals training camp will take place from January 12-15 at the Basketball Australia National Centre of Excellence at the AIS, Canberra.

Jayco Australian Opals January training camp squad: Natalie Hurst (Canberra Capitals), Leilani Mitchell (Dandenong Rangers), Tessa Lavey (Bendigo Spirit), Jennifer Screen (Adelaide Lightning), Kelly Wilson (Bendigo Spirit), Tess Madgen (Melbourne Boomers), Stephanie Cummings (Townsville Fire), Jess Foley (Adelaide Lightning), Katie-Rae Ebzery (Sydney Uni Flames), Rachel Jarry (Melbourne Boomers), Rebecca Allen (Melbourne Boomers), Alice Kunek (Dandenong Rangers), Hanna Zavecz (Logan Thunder), Mia Newley (Townsville Fire), Laura Hodges (Adelaide Lightning), Abby Bishop (Canberra Capitals), Elyse Penaluna (Bendigo Spirit), Carley Mijovic (Canberra Capitals), Lauren Scherf (Dandenong Rangers), Natalie Burton (West Coast Waves), Gabrielle Richards (Bendigo Spirit).

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