By Paul Nilsen
|Laine Selwyn could celebrate the EuroCup Women title with her club Elitzur Ramla|
Israel playmaker Laine Selwyn is hoping the feel good factor from the recent EuroCup Women success of Elitzur Ramla can help fuel the confidence of the National Team heading into EuroBasket Women 2011.
The point-guard is still on a high after the win against Arras of France and is now looking forward to carrying the momentum into the tournament.
"We won our bracket last summer in the Qualifying Round and now with this win, our motivation to continue with this success will be great" explained Selwyn.
"I think everyone wants to continue to show what we can do and make history for Israeli women's basketball while it's also nice to win with Shay (Doron) and Shiran (Zairy) since we have great chemistry and I know it will carry over to the summer time with the National Team."
"Our expectations are high after beating some very good teams last year in the Qualifying Round and we know that if we play focused, we can be very successful. It is something I know we are all looking forward to."
"To me, all the groups are tough but you have to beat the best to be the best. I actually spoke to our Head Coach Eli Rabi the other day and we are both excited."
"We hope this year we can really show our full potential. We have some terrific ball players in Shay (Doron) and Liron (Cohen) and if we play as a team, we will be successful. "
She added, "We are all aware of our record at EuroBasket Women but every time we compete, we have the same goal and that is to win."
"I really hope we can achieve it this summer in Poland."
"I remember our Qualifying Round to get to Latvia in 2009 when the team finished first in our group. I think we were the underdogs that year and we were finally able to show that we were definitely a force to be reckoned with.
"I know we made a name for ourselves in Europe and when people know they have to play Israel it wont be an easy walk in the park."
"I think we have elevated our game even further during the past couple of years and I hope this is our summer to make more memories.
Meanwhile at club level, the sensation of being a EuroCup Women winner with Elitzur Ramla remains something that is still sinking in.
"It's surreal. I feel great but it feels much greater for Israel and Israeli Womens basketball. We are all very excited since we've all been working hard all year for this and to finally take the Cup feels amazing."
"All the hard work at practices, very long travel days and countless hours of film all paid off."
"We did it and it feels so good!"
Not that it was exactly straightforward of course. Indeed Selwyn admitted there were doubts with her team trailing on their home-floor by double digits during the first leg.
"Of course there were doubts. However, I also know our team and we never give up and always try to play hard no matter what - right until the last second."
"I think the fact that we came back to tie one of the most important games of EuroCup Women shows a lot of character and what our team is all about."
"The more I think about it, we were very lucky to come back and tie that game. The score could have been at least a double digit win by them."
"Mentally as players, it's hard knowing you're already down and it would have given Arras a lot of confidence and momentum going into the last and final game."
"The bottom line? Well, I think the team all focused at the right time to avoid disaster and give us a chance in the second game."
"Our success really does mean a tremendous amount. Now many of the great foreign players can see that a credible league here with some good teams."
"It also shows our own fans how good this league and Elitzur Ramla are this year. As a player and a team from personal experience, it has definitely been a huge thing in Israel."
"When I walk down the street, people are congratulating me. The whole country is so excited and I also heard we had very high ratings on television too! I hope this will continue and also add to the fan base we already have here in Israel."