Carrigaline Basketball player Rebecca Sexton has been selected for the U16 Irish team that will compete in the FIBA European Challengers 2021 next month. The tournament takes place in Piestany, Slovakia from August 9th-16th. Rebecca is part of a 12-person squad that is made up of players from 11 different clubs around the country including 4 players hailing from Cork.
Head coach Andy Gill said: “Selecting the final 12 is always the hardest part of our job given the high standard of players at the age group. We were able to play two much-needed games against our U18 team, which despite the age differential, enabled us to see the players in a competitive environment, something they have lacked considerably in the last turbulent year due to the pandemic. This tournament will be the first official game of basketball these young Irish players will have played in well over a year.
They will now have an intense period of preparation before the European Challengers event to fast track their learning. But Coach Gill says, “There is no doubt this group of players will give their all for the country and continue to demonstrate what is good about Irish basketball.”
The Irish team are in Group D of the tournament and will face tournament hosts Slovakia in their opening fixture on August 11th. It is followed by games against Israel (12th August), Switzerland (13th August), Romania (15th August) and Luxembourg (16th August).
Rebecca has been with Carrigaline Basketball Club from a very young age starting in their academy where her love for the game was obvious even then. She is lucky to have had a very strong team of talented and committed players known as the Tigers to play on as this has enabled her to play at A level at each age group and develop into such a talented player. Four of Rebecca’s Carrigaline teammates were also on Cork and South Regional Academy teams with her.
As well as putting in the hours with her team Rebecca has always trained incredibly hard individually in her own time setting a great example to our younger players that hard work and dedication pay off. Her coaches since U12 level Helen and Sarah O'Leary describe Rebecca as a joy to coach and are very proud of the player and person that she has become.
On behalf of Rebecca and Carrigaline Basketball Club we wish to express our sincere gratitude to our main sponsor Astra Construction, and also other local businesses who have supported us.