2016 Class of FIBA Hall of Fame: Michele Timms
MIES (2016 FIBA Hall of Fame) - Former Opals star and three-time Olympian Michele Timms is being honoured as an inductee of the 2016 Class of FIBA Hall of Fame on 27 August at the House of Basketball in Mies, Switzerland.
The Melbourne native is gaining recognition for her impressive achievements and not least, wearing an Australia vest for a staggering 264 games.
Her performances on the court were rarely less than eye-catching and by the time she hung up her basketball shoes, she had assured herself as one of the greatest Australian players of all-time.
Timms was something of a trailblazer after leaving Australia to play professionally overseas in Germany in 1989 - something that was made possible by her having landed on the international tournament stage by way of the 1986 FIBA Women's World Championship. She would subsequently go on to rack up four an impressive four appearances at the event.
The playmaker also represented her nation at three Olympic Games, debuting in 1988 in Seoul and then also featuring in Atlanta in 1996 when she won bronze, prior to captaining the team on home soil in Sydney four years later when the Opals reached the Final for the very first time. It also led to her being handed the Australian Sports Medal in 2000, with Timms eventually finding further success as part of the Opals coaching team at subsequent Olympic events.
She also made waves at club level too, amassing some seven appearances in the WNBL All-Star Team between 1988 and 1996, taking five championships in the process and becoming only the second player in WNBL history to record 1,000 assists and 1,000 rebounds.
Timms then became the first Australian to step onto the WNBA hardwood and to make the WNBA All-Star Game. She famously suited up with the Phoenix Mercury and showed a clear path for several future Opals stars to follow. She even became only the second ever WNBA player to have their jersey retired.
Other individual highlights also included making the All-Star Five of the FIBA Women's European Champions Cup Final Four, twice landing the Basketball Australia International Player of the Year gong and also being handed the Basketball Australia Merit Award in 1996.
It was only a matter of time before Timms was given wider recognition and indeed she was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame and then the Basketball Australia Hall of Fame in 2006.
The next endorsement came from the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame and now her exploits will be further heralded by an induction into the FIBA Hall Of Fame - something which rather fittingly keeps with her role as a trailblazer, since she will be the first female Australian to have ever attained the prestigious honour in recognition of a playing career.