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The fruits of Suriname's Imanuel Zorgvol's hard work
PARAMARIBO (Suriname) — At sixteen years of age and measuring more than two meters, Imanuel Zorgvol arrived at Puerto Rico with a luggage full of dreams to attend the FIBA Youth Development Camp. Four days later he went back to Suriname with a plan and the certainty that he's well on his way to being chosen for the Camp’s All-Star Five.
Among the 24 prospects, Zorgvol caught everyone's eye in San Juan because of his height and athletic abilities — but above all, because of his desire to improve. After preparing for 14 weeks in his country, the tall young man made the most out of this opportunity, got feedback on his game, and made new friends.
“It was a great experience. I did great. The staff are good, they did great. My teammates can really play,” said an emotional Zorgvol to FIBA.basketball when the YDP concluded.
Social and family challenges haven’t been able to stop Zorgvol in his development process. Throughout four days the player completed head to head with some of the best talents in the Caribbean, much of which have an ampler international experience. He acknowledges that his game is a work in progress and that this is only the beginning of a lot more work and effort to reach one of his goals. “I need to work hard. The coach said that I should work hard every day. I want to be a professional player, I want to be an NBA player,” said Zorgvol.
For Suriname Basketball Association (SBA) President Conrad Issa, this is not only a personal achievement for Zorgvol’s efforts but also a collective success for the Association in its efforts to develop basketball in the South American nation.
“Suriname is quite honored to have had two players picked for the Youth Development Camp in Puerto Rico,” said Issa. “Imanuel has been working very hard. The good thing about having chosen him is that since we started to work three months ago, he's also been the player with the greatest progress. This is a high point for us. The motivation this kid has because he was chosen, noticed and seen I believe will have an incredible impact on his basketball career.”
According to the Association’s President, the SBA will follow-up with Zorgvol's career to guarantee the player's comprehensive long-term development, making the most out of the fact that he was chosen for the Top 5.
“He came back super motivated. We're working on a continuity program with him and all the pointers he received from coaches. And we also need to pay attention to his education. I think that, for his age, this is happening at a good moment, and the SBA will do everything to help him,” Issa concluded.