14 October 2014
Twelve students from Oaklands College’s Basketball Academy are celebrating after being selected for Basketball England’s initial National Team squads.
The students were chosen by Basketball England to join the National Teams program, which will see them develop their skills and gain experience playing at international level, whilst hoping to compete for England this summer at the annual European Championships.
Melanie George, Holly Merchant, Kyla Nelson, Paige Robinson, Vicky Gray and Shanice Turner have been selected for the U18 women’s squad. Aiden Gastaldi-Davies and Dominic Scott-Robinson will join the U18 men’s squad, while George Pool, Nathan Ramsdale-Owen, Tarjhay Taylor and Evan Walshe were chosen for the U17 men’s squad.
Nathan, 16, said: “I’m extremely grateful to be able to play alongside some of the best players in the country and I hope to make it to the initial squad. Sixteen-year-old George said: “I am honoured to be recognised as one of the top athletes for my age, and to get the opportunity to prove myself at the high test level.”
Kyla, 16, said: “It makes me proud to have another opportunity to represent my country.”
Michael Ball, the College’s Basketball Academy Programme Manager, said: "We are really proud to see these students selected in this year’s National Teams squads. All the players know that they will need to continue to improve if they want to stay in the National Teams setup as the programs become more competitive every year. As staff we also have an even greater responsibility to ensure that we continue to give them the performance environment each player needs to help them move forward.”
Back Row (from left to right): Melanie George, Aidan Gastaldi-Davies, Paige Robinson, Dominic Scott-Robinson, Holly Merchant, George Pool, Vicky Gray, Oaklands Coach Lee Ryan
Front Row (from left to right): Tarjhay Taylor, Kyla Nelson, Evan Walshe, Shanice Turner, Nathan Ramsdale-Owen
The College’s Basketball Academy aims to help players develop their skills while continuing with their academic studies. To find out more, please click here.