Naomi shines for Gliders



GLADSTONE's Naomi Schouten is happy to be home after shining with the Australian Gliders wheelchair basketball team in Canada.

In her first ever trip overseas, Schouten played a key role for the Gliders at the Spitfire Challenge held in Toronto. The Spitfire Challenge saw the Gliders pitted against Canada and Germany in five days of round robin competition.

Schouten was very happy with her performance for the Gliders, as she featured in every game of the tournament.

'I was very happy with the way I played, the level of competition was strong and to play a part is pleasing,' Schouten said.

'Considering it was my first ever overseas trip and the first tour with the team, I thought I played well.'

Even though the Gliders were runners-up, Schouten said the team thought they played quite well.

'I think everyone was happy with how the team went.

'The three teams were fairly well-matched and Canada only won the title in the last game,' she said.

Schouten added the experience of travelling with the Gliders team was invaluable and it would definitely make her a better player.

'I really learned a lot on and off the court on the trip,' she said.

'To travel with the girls is very different than normal and we trained pretty hard over there, I think I have come back a better player.'

Adding to a trip that Schouten will never forget was the trip back home which was punctuated by the plane crash in Canada and an overnight stopover in Hawaii.

'I was happy to get back home alright.

'The plane crash was really something surreal, I thought the plane was on fire.

'And the stopover in Hawaii was horrendous because the plane was delayed and we couldn't leave the airport,' she said.

Schouten won't get much time to relax with the finals of the Women's Wheelchair National Basketball League (WWNBL) on in a fortnight.

'There isn't a lot of time for me to relax, but I wouldn't have it any other way,' she said.



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