28 June, 2014
06 July
Caroline Clarke-03-06-2014
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CAN - Clarke ready to continue the momentum

MISSISSAUGA (FIBA U17 World Championship for Women) - Canada head coach Carly Clarke is preparing to try and somehow emulate her nation's bronze medal success at the last edition of the FIBA U17 World Championship for Women.

While it will be a difficult task for the North American side to replicate the glory of Amsterdam two years ago and seal another podium place this time around, Clarke is confident her team will arrive in Czech Republic with some very positive attributes.

"Our group of athletes have great work ethic and passion for the game - we are looking forward to demonstrating this on the world stage," she insisted.

"Our staff are very excited for the summer and the upcoming FIBA U17 World Championship.

"Both our staff and athletes have been diligently preparing for this competition following a successful qualifier last summer."

Currently the head coach of the Ryerson Rams women's basketball team, Clarke is back at the helm of a national women's youth team for a fourth year and eager for her players to embrace the global platform which they will all tread for the first time.

Not that this should daunt them, having made the Final of the FIBA Americas U16 Championship for Women in Cancun last year.

"Our athletes gained valuable experience and confidence last summer in Mexico," said Clarke, who will be assisted by Andre Desjardins and Taffe Charles.

"We will work to build on that with their first exposure to a FIBA World Championship competition."

The immediate priority is to decide which three players will be left disappointed, with Canada Basketball revealing a preliminary candidate list of 15.

All invitees will assemble for a try-out at the University of Toronto, Mississauga campus next week in a bid to secure their seat on the plane to Europe.

Following the try-out, the national federation will host a training camp with the team, before heading to Nogent-sur-Seine in France for what is expected to be a highly-competitive exhibition tournament.

They will play games against the hosts, China and their neighbours USA as they prepare to try and follow-up the success of two years ago, when their predecessors delivered Canada's highest finish ever in a women's age group FIBA competition.

Leading the charge will be Bridget Carleton and Lauren Yearwood who top-scored in Mexico, with Jaelyne Kirkpatrick also back to showcase her impressive passing skills.

Canada 15-player squad for 2014 FIBA U17 World Championship for Women: Chelayne Bailey, Halle Bovell, Mikaela Brewer, Hailey Brown, Bridget Carleton, Julia Chandler, Maurane Corbin, Danielle Garven, Mael Gilles, Jaelyne Kirkpatrick, Michaela Nieuweuhuizen, Nicole Vander Helm, Kendra Van Leeuwen, Eternati Willock, Lauren Yearwood.

Canada will face Czech Republic, Hungary and Korea in Group A, which will be located in Klatovy.