18 - 26
September 2021
4 Jade Leitao (CPV)
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Jade Leitao on a mission sharing her longevity with Cape Verde's new generation

 YAOUNDE (Cameroon) - Passion they said is a driving force that is difficult to be ignored if possessed, this is the simplest way to describe Cape Verde ageless guard and National Basketball Association, NBA Junior League personnel Jade Leitao.

Leitao has been of immense service to grassroots basketball development especially in nations considered to be disadvantaged in the sport for over six years through the NBA Jr. League.

- Jade Leitao

Leitao opened up to FIBA.basketball about her passion for the game and how far the journey she wants to go in supporting the game.

With five FIBA Women's AfroBasket appearances, the 38-year-old says she is not done with the championship as she hopes to continue to represent her country for as long as she can.

"I am not sure I am ready to call quit with playing as I will always be ready to represent my country," Leitao emphasised.

Cape Verde closed their Group A campaigns with a 0-2 after losses to Kenya and host Cameroon.

The Islanders will take on Angola on Wednesday in the qualification round for the Quarter-Finals. 

Leitao recalls that her national team involvement means a big deal to her.

Jade Leitao in action at Women's AfroBasket 2019 in Dakar

The shooting guard says she feels happy helping out on the court either playing or coaching as she is doing with her national team and offering knowledge-based support to young players in the various NBA camps and in Cape Verde.

"I always feel fulfilled each time I am called upon to represent my country in any championship or be part of coaching personnel in various camps," said the former Olivais de Coimbra star.

"It's a thing of joy for one to render support to disadvantaged people, especially young people because nothing is as fulfilling as that."

Jade Leitao is seen in action at Women's AfroBasket 2013 in Maputo

Asked what she will be doing when she eventually retires from playing and her response was very direct. "I have already chosen my path which I already doing even while still playing, I am a coach with the NBA Jr league and hope to continue in that line.

"I usually take time out to teach young people the rudiments of the game each time I found myself in my country and I will continue to do that which offers me happy," Leitao concluded.