Teen gets big break with bas­ket­ball rep se­lec­tion

Matamata Chronicle - - Sport - By ABBY BROWN

Shae Tyler’s choice to switch from rugby to bas­ket­ball has paid off.

The Mata­mata Col­lege stu­dent will, as a mem­ber of the New Zealand Un­der 17 boys team, travel to Syd­ney and Port Mac­quarie in Aus­tralia in Jan­uary to com­pete in the Bas­ket­ball Pa­cific Tour.

‘‘Shae only started play­ing bas­ket­ball this year for Mata­mata Col­lege,’’ his mum Vicki Tyler said. ‘‘He played rugby right up un­til this year.’’

She said Shae, 14, had dab­bled a lit­tle in bas­ket­ball last year and wanted to do more but the in­ter­me­di­ate didn’t have a bas­ket­ball team.

Vicki said her son has quite a pas­sion for the sport and fol­lows the New Zealand Break­ers and NBA and knows all the play­ers names and teams.

‘‘NBA I guess would have to be in his sights. Ask him want he wants to do when he leaves school and the an­swer is bas­ket­ball.’’

He was ini­tially se­lected as a re­serve for this up-com­ing tour.

The se­lec­tion was not only about his per­for­mance but also com­mu­ni­ca­tion on the court, be­ing a team player and cre­at­ing a good en­vi­ron­ment, she said.

‘‘This is some­thing the coaches are work­ing on with hav­ing sev­eral kids from across the coun­try and bring­ing them to­gether as a team for the tour­na­ment.’’

Shae and his fam­ily need to find more than $3000 for his trip. They will be hold­ing a few raf­fles in town and ap­proach­ing busi­nesses for spon­sor­ship, Vicki said.


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