The NBL Weekend Takeover for 16/17 February will see Sussex Storm take the reins of the NBL Instagram story.
We caught up with Storms' Aisha Bass-Mekere of their takeover weekend, in the first of two Player Spotlight features.
Name: Aisha Bass-Mekere
Team: Sussex Storm - Under 14 Girls (South Regional)
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Aisha Bass-Mekere, I play for Sussex Storm Under 14 Girls team in the NBL. I love basketball because it is a sport that brings everyone together, and we are all one. I started playing basketball when I was in Year 7.
What brought you to the NBL in the first place?
I had seen people play NBL as I was playing local league for Crawley Storm, so from there I felt like I needed a challenge. This is why I tried out for the Under 14 Girls NBL team; to up my game.
What was your first impression of the NBL? How has that changed?
My first impression was that the league was tough, however now that I have got to know the league I have settled in and learned what competing at this level is all about.
What was your first "bright spot" with your team?
When we won against Brighton Cougars – it was our first NBL win. We were so happy when it happened and we knew could win more! I scored a three-pointer in the last 30 seconds that meant we took the lead.
What was your biggest challenge?
Getting to know the other teams’ strengths and weaknesses, so we can apply it in our training sessions and know how to stop them in games.
What changes have you noticed in yourself since joining the NBL?
I have become more confident being a leader and helping my teammates – giving them feedback, like corrections, etc. I have also got to know the other teams and how they play.
What are you working on right now, what are your current goals?
I am working my defensive pressure, knowing who I am marking and being a leader for my team. The goals I am currently working towards at to play for England and to play basketball in college, but first try I am trying my hardest to get into the Aspire Tournament squad for the South East.
What is your favourite NBL memory?
When I scored that three-pointer against Brighton in the last 30 seconds to take the lead in our first win in the NBL.
What advice would you give someone who is just getting started in basketball?
To try your hardest every game, every training session, and show that you are determined to take your game to the next level. Also, have trust in yourself – no matter what.
What do you like to do outside of basketball?
I like to play football, go shopping and spend time with my family and friends.
Finally, who is your favourite British basketball player and why?
My favourite British player is Hosana Kitenge because he has a friendly image and he is a good team player. He is a leader and he has good attitude; the way he plays is amazing and he always gives people advice on what they need to improve. He has previously helped us at Storm camps by giving advice on how to do something properly, or things to add to our game to make us better.
You can follow Aisha's progress this weekend when Sussex Storm takeover the NBL Instagram story!