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Ipswich Basketball star Esther Little 'honoured' to once more represent nation, with GB U18's at the European Championships

Esther Little may fast be becoming a dab hand for Team GB’s youth basketball sides, but that does not mean she takes anything for granted.

The 17-year-old from Ixworth has been selected for GB Basketball’s Under-18 Women’s team who will tomorrow begin their bid for European U18 Championship glory.

Little helped then WNBL Division Two North side Ipswich Basketball to an unbeaten season in 2017/18, winning a historic treble and sparking a step up from GB’s U16s.

The former Thurston Community College pupil will line up as one of the more experienced players for GB U18s in their opening encounter against the Netherlands, having competed for the team last year.

The match, in Group D of the European Championships Division B, will take place in the Macedonian capital of Skopje. The team will then take on Sweden, Ukraine, Albania and Luxembourg in their other group stage matches.

Little said: “It sounds like such a cliché, but it is an honour, every single time I get the chance to put on a GB shirt.

“It’s an amazing feeling to wear GB on your chest and it feels really special, it means a lot to me to get the chance to play – it’s also recognition for the hard work and effort I’ve put in so far.

Esther Little, 16, playing for Ipswich Seniors in the 2017/18 season. (13360737)
Esther Little, 16, playing for Ipswich Seniors in the 2017/18 season. (13360737)

“But we also know it’s going to be a tough competition – we’re not targeting a medal, but obviously we will play our best and who knows.”

The team finished 10th in Division B in the 2018 championships but this year’s squad is particularly young, with seven players stepping up to U18 level.

But the senior women’s squad’s success this summer, with them this week fighting to reach Olympic qualifiers, has inspired Little.

“It’s amazing to see, it’s really exciting and it would be massive for basketball in the country,” she added.

“It pushes us on to do well too.”

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