Preliminary GB Women’s side announced for qualifiers

A preliminary squad of 20 players has been announced and invited to next month’s training camp ahead of this summer’s GB Women’s EuroBasket Qualification campaign.

The squad will come together from May 12th at the University of Worcester Arena to prepare for tough EuroBasket 2015 Qualifier challenges against Belgium, FYR of Macedonia and Lithuania.

With Kim Butler’s retirement, there are two names back on the list that will boost hopes for the women’s team; Temi Fagbenle and Jenaya Wade-Frey return to the squad after missing last year due to injury.

In line with policy of introducing GB futures to the squad, four of GB’s best youth players have been selected including Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby, Cheridene Green, Erin McGarrachan and Eilidh Simpson. Harriet and Cheridene joined the squad last but Cheridene was recovering from injury and Erin was not available to attend camp. Both McGarrachan and Simpson have previously represented GB at U20 level.

In another sign of depth in the squad, is that one former squad member, Helen Naylor who has had a good 2013-14 domestic season in England Basketball’s Division One (Sheffield Hatters) has been invited back to challenge for the small forward position. New to the squad this year are Nicole How and Chantelle Pressley.

How began her 2013-14 season with German side Sandhausen in the Bundesliga 2, where she averaged 20.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. She is currently playing with Northern Suburbs in Australia’s Waratah League.

Following a successful college career with Eastern Illinois University, Pressley signed her first professional contract this season with French side Argentonnaises Thouras Basket 79 where she averages 12.9 points per game.

GB women’s head coach, Peter Buckle, who was appointed at the end of March, commented on the selection: “I’m excited about our squad coming together in May and starting our preparations. The depth of our program is growing and with that, the competition for all positions is tight. This is both pleasing and tough for our selection panel.

“Our preparation will be short. We need to be ready to play well in our first game against Belgium on Sunday, 8 June at home. We will need to make the most of our time in preparation.”

British Basketball’s National Teams Director Warwick Cann added; “It’s good to have returning Olympians back in the squad. While we will miss Kim Butler, Temi and Jenaya’s return is positive and we have also continued to introduce our young talent, as we need to build our squad depth.

“This provisional squad has very good depth in all positions and I am sure that all players will be challenging, or will be challenged for a position on the final team. This should help the team’s competitiveness.”

Full details of the 20 players in the preliminary squad are:

Name Position Home Nation 13-14 Club(s)/University Team
Dominique Allen C/PF England COP Calais (FRA)
Rose Anderson G Scotland Edinburgh KK
Ella Clark F England Long Beach State University (USA)
Stefanie Collins PG England Cardiff Archers
Temitope Fagbenle C England Harvard University (USA)
Stephanie Gandy F England Sheffield Hatters
Cheridene Green C England Sevenoaks Suns
Chantelle Handy F England UMEA (SWE); Nantes (FRA)
Nicole How PG England Northern Suburbs (AUS); Sandhausen (GER)
Georgia Jones PG England Loughborough Riders
Johannah Leedham G England Bourges (FRA)
Erin McGarrachan F Scotland Houston Baptist University (USA)
Helen Naylor SF England Sheffield Hatters
Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby F England Lafayette Leopards
Chantelle Pressley F England Argentonnaises Thouras (FRA)
Eilidh Simpson PG England St. Francis Brooklyn (USA)
Azania Stewart C England Adelaide Lightning (AUS)
Lauren Thomas-Johnson G/SF England Sheffield Hatters
Rachael Vanderwal G/PG England University of Limerick (IRL)
Jenaya Wade-Frey G England Unattached (USA)

Tickets for GB Women’s EuroBasket qualifying games this summer, to be held at University of Worcester Arena, are still available. Click on this link to buy yours NOW!

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