The basketball season is now in full swing and the Asia Oceania Championships is just around the corner. Rollt.’s Dylan Cummings caught up with UTA Lady Movin’ Mavs and Aussie Gliders national team player, Annabelle Lindsay to find out how she’s been getting on this season and how she’s been preparing for the upcoming Championships.
How’s the season going at UTA?
“The season is going well; we have our first tournament coming up in a couple weeks. We also have the GB national team coming to play and train at UTA soon which will give our team some great game experience against one of the best national teams in the world.”
How important do you think it is for people to pursue education whilst also progressing in their sporting career?
“I think its super important as unfortunately our bodies won’t let us play wheelchair basketball forever so it’s important to have another career that you can fall back on when you retire. Being able to get degree whilst also getting world-class training is an amazing opportunity and is something I would recommend to any athlete.”
What new challenges do you face as an Australian in an American college system?
“I think the biggest challenge for any international student is getting used to being so far away from friends and family, especially with the 16-hour time difference. Luckily the school system is pretty similar to Australia so that made the transition to the American college system a little easier.”
Are the coaching styles different between UTA and the Australian women’s national team?
“There are some definite differences between the two teams with regards to defensive principles and offensive structure, though that is always going to be the case when you play for multiple teams. Luckily for me, I play in a similar role in both teams.”
Do you feel that the skills you learn at UTA help you when you return to Australia to play in the NWBL?
“Most definitely, it’s an awesome feeling when I can see all the skills that I have been working on at UTA translate on court in the competitions back home and internationally.”
What are your goals for next season?
“Obviously to win the National Collegiate Championship, though as we are a team full of fresh faces, another focus of ours is to build team comradery and to figure out how we can utilise all our athletes’ strengths on court.”
How have the Aussie Gliders been preparing for the Asia Oceania Championships?
“We have recently participated in several ‘friendly’ tournaments against both the USA and Japan. We will also be heading to Thailand five days early to have a training camp before the Asia Oceania Championships begin.”
How do you think American culture differs from Australian culture?
“Americans have a lot more ‘school spirit’ than Australians and they do a great job of supporting their college sports teams. There are also lots of funny differences such as Americans driving on the wrong side of the road, the differences in food, terminology and spelling.”
What do you miss the most about Australia when you are abroad?
“Most definitely the food and coffee, and family and friends of course.”
How would you describe your style of play?
“I would consider myself a post player as my first look is either to get a mismatch or to get a shot inside the key. In saying that, I also take a lot of mid-range jump shots when the post shot isn’t available to drive into.”
Has anyone specifically influenced you to play the way you do?
“My UTA coach, Jason Nelms has had the biggest influence on my game. Before I came to UTA, I was very raw and had little chair skills or knowledge of the game. Within just a year and a half, Jason was able to develop my game and mould me into the athlete I am today.”
What piece of advice has stuck with you throughout your career?
“Hard work beats talent.”
If you could do a training session with three other players from anywhere in the world male or female to improve your skills, which players would you choose and why?
“In the women’s game, I would choose Mariska Beijer and Mareike Miller they are the best 4-point female players in the world. I would also choose Patrick Anderson as I think he is the most skilled player to ever play the game.”
Rollt. would like to thank Annabelle Lindsay for the interview.
Annabelle Lindsay Profile
Date of Birth: 10/02/1998 (aged 21)
Hometown: Canberra, ACT
Started playing: 2017
Australia senior debut: 2017 Asia Oceania Championships – Beijing, China
Disability: Grade 4 cartilage damage in her right knee
_University of Texas at Arlington Lady Movin’ Mavs, USA (2018-Present)
_Sydney University Flames, AUS (NWBL) (2017-Present)
_Canberra Chargers, AUS (Local Competitions) (2017-Present)
_2019 Women’s U25 World Championships – Suphan Buri, Thailand – Silver (Australia)
_2017/18 NWBA Women’s Collegiate Championships – Gold (UTA)
Interview: Dylan Cummings | Photo: Steffie Wunderl