Vaishnavi hungry for more

Forward credits team-mates for her success

Vaishnavi hungry for more

When India began their campaign in Divison B of the FIBA under-16 Women’s Asian Championship, worries centred around their preparations.

The players had been together for barely two months and had little international exposure but the hosts’ performance paints a different picture and leaves little room for doubt.

India are atop Group A, following convincing wins in the three matches they’ve played so far. India mauled Nepal 106-37, defeated Sri Lanka 86-58 and outclassed Iran 97-53.

Forward Vaishnavi Yadav was in the thick of things in all their victories. The 16-year-old from Allahabad has accumulated 67 points, the most in the squad, and also made 22 assists.

Vaishnavi credits her team-mates for her success. “There is a lot of unity in our team. Our performance has been great thanks to our unity,” said Vaishnavi, who took up basketball in 2011.

Vaishnavi also hailed the impact of Serbian Zoran Visic, who led the senior women’s team to Division A.

“Our coach is really good. He understands us and always tries to teach us new things. If we do anything wrong, he corrects us gently, with love. And next time we go and do that better. We are very happy to have Zoran sir as our coach. Anitha (Paul Durai, the assistant coach) ma’am is also very supportive. Explains everything with love during our team meetings,” said Vaishnavi.

In her second appearance in the biannual event, Vaishnavi sees a lot of improvement in her game and is hungry for more.  “I didn’t get to play a lot back then. My game wasn’t that good. But I learnt a lot, and gained in experience. After that I put in a lot of hard work to get here. I’m really happy. A lot of the game’s technical aspects have been explained to us brilliantly, which has really helped me,” Vaishnavi explained.

“I want to improve my passing sense, boxing out, rebounds. This is a new beginning for me, there are lots of things to improve,” she added.

Meanwhile, Visic was pleased with the team’s display.

“Happy? Yes, I’m happy with how the team has played. I’m really happy because even after being unable to practice at the Kanteerava Stadium, we have done well. We are now first in the group. Tomorrow we can practice two times here (since India have a bye to the semifinals),” he said.

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