Wellington Scoop

International basketball success for Queen Margaret student

Press Release – Queen Margaret College
A Year 11 Queen Margaret College student will be playing on the world stage in Basketball next year.

Paris Lokotui is part of the New Zealand Aon Women’s U17 who made history in Bangalore, India by becoming the first junior-women’s national side to qualify for a basketball World Cup after defeating Thailand in the quarter-final of the FIBA Asian Championship in October.

Paris scored 19 points and 9 rebounds in the World Cup qualifying match.

Paris, who has been playing basketball since Year 7, says it was a “thrilling experience” to make it to Bangalore and then the World Cup.

“You have so many emotions when playing for your country. It’s exciting to show people around the world how I play,” she says.

“As a team our number one goal was to qualify for the Under 17 World Cup, so to achieve this definitely lifted a weight off our shoulders.”

Paris says her team was now preparing for the World Cup in Belarus, which will take place next July.

“We will have monthly camps where as a team we will train hard and play against stronger competition, like the New Zealand U17 boys team. As an individual I’ll be trying to maintain a higher level of fitness and intensity when I train,” she says.

Paris is also a rep player in Water Polo and Netball and was part of this year’s Aotearoa Māori Netball International Secondary School team, the NZ Water Polo U16 team and the Wellington U17 Netball team.

She plays in the Queen Margaret College Senior A Basketball and Senior A Netball teams, both of which made history in their respective categories this year.

Paris credits her father as her sporting and everyday hero.

“He encourages me to do my best, to work harder than others and to do the little things right like finishing under the hoop and making sure I stretch before and after every game. He always tells me that hard work beats talent, as talent only gets you so far,” she says.

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