U20 Women Division B
|Alena Hanusová missed out on a medal at EuroBasket Women with the Czech Republic but is aiming for one with the U20 team|
Alena Hanusova is about to undergo a huge change.
She will leave the EuroBasket Women in Poland, where she helped the Czech Republic make an impressive run to the Semi-Finals, and travel to Ohrid in the F.Y.R. of Macedonia to compete at the U20 European Championship Women Division B.
One year after the Czechs hosted the FIBA World Championship for Women and won a silver medal, Hanusova practiced, played and spent time off the court with Czech stars like Eva Viteckova and Jana Vesela, two of the finest competitors the country has ever produced.
She has also played for national team boss Lubor Blazek, one of the most respected coaches in the game.
"It was a good experience for me," Hanusova said to FIBA Europe after her side's bronze-medal game defeat to France.
"I didn't get a lot of minutes, but it was valuable being with the senior team."
Now comes the transition.
The level of competition won't be as high in Ohrid as in Lodz, and Hanusova is likely to get more minutes.
Yet she isn't sure what to expect.
"On the one hand, I got some experience with the senior team but on the other hand, I'm going to join the U20 team and I haven't played with them at all and I don't know the signals," she said.
When a young player has talent like Hanusova, there's never going to be much time to rest.
"I have two days off after this tournament before going to the tournament," she said.
Hanusova knows there are no guarantees and that next year, she'll have to impress to make the Czech squad that travels to the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament for Women.
It's something she is very hopeful of doing.
"It's an honor to play for your country and I hope I can be with the senior national team in the future," she said.
The U20 European Championship Women gets underway on July 8 and lasts until July 17.
The Czechs are in Group B with Greece, Belgium, Israel, Estonia and Austria.