It's All About Showing Heart For Turkey's Demirok


All eyes in Istanbul are on the Turkey team that is about to play at the U18 European Championship for Women in Sweden.

Seventeen-year-old Pinar Demirok, a 1.82m forward who played on last year's team that finished ninth in Nitra, Slovakia, is with the squad again and she answered these questions by Basketball World News for FIBA Europe.

FIBA Europe: Pinar, congratulations on being a part of the Turkey U18 side again. Are you a full-time professional now? Is there a different approach for you when you play for your club and your country?

Pinar: Thanks. Now I am not a full-time professional but I hope I will be a full-time professional next season. When I am on the court, nothing changes for my club or national team - I play from my heart. But when I play for the national team, one thing changes because I can die for my country.

FIBA Europe: Big tournaments have been held in Turkey in the past (EuroBasket Women 2005) and will be next year (2010 FIBA World Championship for Men). Do events like these make young people want to play basketball?


Pinar: Yes, these organized competitions are very good for my country and for our children. (Also) We have two NBA stars Hidayet Turkoglu and Mehmet Okur and they are very successful there, so our young people do want to play basketball more.

FIBA Europe: If you could meet any basketball player in the world, man or woman, who would it be and why?

Pinar: I want to give two different answers, one of them for men's basketball other one for women's basketball. For men's, I want to meet Kobe Bryant because he scores very easily and I want to ask him how he does it? For women's, I want to meet (Turkey international) Saziye Ivegin from my country because she is one of the best players in Europe.

FIBA Europe: Why do you like playing for your national team?

Pinar: I am very happy to play for my country and everybody in our team is my friend. We are like a family.

FIBA Europe: Tell us a little bit about your game. What do you do well on the court, and what areas of the game do you desperately want to improve?

Pinar: I play from the heart and I give everything on the court because I want to win every game. My team's games are like a war for me.

FIBA Europe: There are a lot of good teams in Europe. What can we expect from your team this summer in Sweden?

Pinar: We will do the best for our country and I hope we will win the championship. I want to say to every teams who is coming Sweden: Good Luck!"


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