Seychellois basketballer plays for French club in departmental league competition
File Photo: Jana (in possession of the ball) is now playing for a club in the departmental league in France. (Patrick Joubert, Seychelles News Agency)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychellois basketball player Jana Malbrook has joined the senior team of Amicale Laique Césaire Levillain -- a club in the departmental league in France.
Malbrook, 21, told SNA via Facebook that she has been playing from the first week she joined the team based in Le Grand-Quevilly in the French district of Rouen. She said the level of play is very different from that of Seychelles.
“Here players are more tactical rather than physical with better fundamentals which are important for the game,” said Malbrook.
|Jana (right) with another fellow Seychellois volleyball player Petra Richard also playing in France. (Jana Malbrook) Photo License: All Rights Reserved|
The opportunity to play in France came when she met French Coach Pascal Poitier last year during the national team’s preparation for the Indian Ocean Island Games – a multi-sport event held every four years for athletes from the Indian Ocean region.
“I was in touch with Pascal Poitier who is the coach for the men's team and our national team coach last year. He accompanied us to a training camp in South Africa, before being replaced by Dominique Gueret,” Malbrook said.
She added that: “Last year we (the Seychelles national team) also played a friendly match with a French team coached by Jeremy Surmulet who is the current coach of the Césaire’s club.”
The 21-year old sees her move to France as an opportunity to improve her skills and try for a professional career.
“It is something I've always wanted not just for me but for my parents as well, for their dedication and time given to me since I was little,” Malbrook told SNA.
Malbrook comes from a family of basketball players. Her father Michel is a former player now a coach, and her mother Simone is a member of the B Challenge club from the central district of Bel Air.
|A family of basketball players. Jana (middle) pictured with dad Michel and mum Simone. (Jana Malbrook) Photo License: All Rights Reserved|
Since Malbrook started playing basketball in secondary school with Anse Etoile Stars from the north eastern side of the main island, Mahe, she always has had the support of her parents and misses them.
“We always talk and sometimes video chat which helps a lot with the transition. It has been the three of us for a while doing everything together being everywhere together and I guess this is as hard for them as it is for me,” said Malbrook.
She added that having given up her life back home to live her dream makes her all the more motivated to succeed.
Malbrook said, “I would like to thank the sponsors who believed in me, especially my parents. Pascal and his family for accepting me in their home and special thanks to Abdel Sylla and Rodney Ah-Kong for being my tutor when life here gets tough and always reminding me to never give up on my dream.”