Highland teenager and Caledonia pugilists player represents Great Britain at European Basketball Championship

ZOE Sharpe is being hailed as a rising star of British basketball having formerly played at the loftiest position in the public game.

The athlete featured for the Caledonia pugilists last season, the only Scottish platoon in the Women’s British Basketball League( WBBL) who finished in alternate place in the2022/23 crusade.

The 17- time-old also represented Great Britain at the FIBA Under- 18 Women’s European Championship Division B which took place in Bulgaria before this month.

She was one of only two Scottish players in the team of 12 to contend at the event.

She says representing Great Britain at a advanced age position is another positive brio in her basketball career.

She said “ This was my alternate time playing for Great Britain.

“ I was playing in the under- 16 platoon last time and this was the first time playing in the under- 18 platoon.

“ This is another position up in my basketball career for sure, the professionalism and the standard of play was a lot advanced compared to under- 16 position.

“ It was a great experience and experimental occasion for my basketball career.

” As you get two times in each age group, I’ll get to play at under- 18 position again in the future so it’s great medication for that. ”

Sharpe’s natural capability for basketball was first noticed by Inverness Lions Basketball Club when she was still at Holm Primary School and was asked to join up by impressed trainers.

She continued playing for Lions while a pupil at Inverness Royal Academy, before being derided by Caledonia Pride, which went on to be rebranded Caledonia pugilists.

As she chased her basketball dream, it also meant that Sharpe left home in Inverness after subscribing for the club when she was 15.

But her gift saw her soar through the species to play and train with the first platoon in the WBBL.

“ I started at Holm Primary School and I was named to join Inverness Lions which led to me playing for the under- 14 Scotland team. Through those openings, I got into a player development programme with SportScotland.

I went for trials two times ago at Caledonia Pride at Edinburgh, right after Covid and I got a spot at the club.

“ I joined the Caledonia Pride when I was 15 and also I moved from Inverness to Edinburgh when the club was grounded there.

“ Also I spent the last time in Glasgow when the club moved there and were renamed Caledonia pugilists.

“ I was relatively youthful to be joining that platoon at 15, and there was little anticipation that I would get to play with the first platoon.

“ I was going for the fantastic training openings the club could give me. ”

Playing alongside and training against established elderly players at the top position of women’s British basketball may feel daunting to utmost teenagers.

But Sharpe says she has embraced the occasion of playing against educated athletes and says that it has proved inestimable in her development into getting one of the top British players for her age group.

“ A lot of the regular season sees me play with and against athletes who are a lot aged than me, ” she said.

“ As a youthful player on a professional platoon I’m alongside players who are over to 15 times aged than me.

“ Playing at the European Under- 18 crowns was a rare chance to play against players in my own age group.

“ Caledonia pugilists are pushing to be a top platoon and are looking to get into European competition on a regular base.

“ To get to train with professional players every day and play against educated players is great for my development.

“ They’ve professional athletes from across the world and offer openings for youthful players to come on a development base.

“ I’ve been given a lot of openings to play for the under- 18 platoon and elderly platoon playing in the Scottish National League and WBBL.

“ Caledonia pugilists are really pushing to be known across Scotland, they’ve a strong fanbase and represent us as a country in the WBBL. It’s great to be part of it. ”

At a youthful age, Sharpe was an athlete who bettered at a number of sports, but went on to concentrate on calisthenics and basketball.

Although she turned her attention to basketball in after times, Sharpe says her involvement in calisthenics has helped her development on the court.

“ I did everything when I was youthful, I was a lot fitter and faster than utmost people my age when I was youngish.

“ Also I moved into calisthenics and basketball as my two main sports.

“ I used to be a member of Inverness Harriers and I represented them in running for a many times which has significantly backed my basketball capability and chops. As a point guard, using my experience from calisthenics is really useful as in that position you need to be the quickest player on the court. ”

Sharpe has intentions of continuing to play under- 18 basketball with Great Britain.

Having finished her final time at secondary academy, she also hopes to earn a education to play council basketball in the United States.

She lately returned back to Inverness and was invited by Highland Bears Basketball Club to take part in summer sessions designed to get further kiddies involved with the sport.

Highland Bears and Inverness Lions have both seen success through their youth systems.

Girls from both clubs have been called up to play for Scotland at under- 14 position and under 16 position this time.

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