Half-Court Press: An English Duo

17 August 2013
8. Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriott (England)
Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriott would love to participate in the 100m at the Olympics

It has been an extremely tough initiation to Division A basketball for newcomers England at the U18 European Championship Women after suffering successive defeats to Russia and Croatia.

So, took a little time out from the serious business of searching for a first win by finding out a little more about English pair Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby and Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriott.

What's your first basketball memory?
Bravo-Harriott: My mum walked me into the Haringey Angels home venue where I saw all the older players doing the ‘Mikan drill'. This was the day I first played basketball with a club team.
Ottewill-Soulsby: Playing in a tournament for my school team in Germany and being so proud of myself for scoring!

Why did you want to become a basketball player?
Ottewill-Soulsby: I started playing because I was tall, but once I joined, I soon found a love for the game and loved being part of a team!
Bravo-Harriott: I've always enjoyed the sport, love the different skills needed for the game and the friendships I have developed out of it.

Which part of training/practice do you like the most/the least?
Bravo-Harriott: My favourite part is the shooting drills or 1-on-1 and the worst is fitness drills.
Ottewill-Soulsby: I love playing 5-on-5 the most, it's so much fun to just get out there and run and play hard against each other. The punishments such as sprints and press-ups are definitely the worst!

If you were at the Olympics but not as a basketball player, which other sport do you think it would be fun to win a gold medal in and why?
Bravo-Harriott: The 100 metres because that seems like the most exciting sport I have seen on television.
Ottewill-Soulsby: Athletics! The atmosphere in the stadium always seems amazing. I loved watching Great Britain Olympic stars Jess Ennis, Mo Farah and Greg Rutherford win gold last year!

Your dream holiday would be where and doing what?
Ottewill-Soulsby: A road trip round the west coast of America. I've visited a few places in that area before and I loved it.
Bravo-Harriott: Not sure.

If you could only listen to one song again for the rest of your life what would it be?
Bravo-Harriott: ‘Didn't know my own strength' by Whitney Houston.
Ottewill-Soulsby: ‘Mr Brightside' by The Killers.

Who would you love to be stuck in a lift with?
Ottewill-Soulsby: A lift engineer, I hate being in enclosed spaces!
Bravo-Harriott: Maya Moore or Elena Delle Donne.

Who would you hate to be stuck in a lift with?
Bravo-Harriott: Anyone who is rude.
A bigger person who hasn't showered in a while.

Who should get to choose the music on the team bus and what type of music would it be?
I would get myself to choose the music and it would vary between Dance or Rap music.
Ottewill-Soulsby: It depends on who has the loudest speakers! One minute we could be listening to Kendrick Lamar and the next it could be One Direction!

Who is the most sensible of your teammates and who is the craziest and why?
Ottewill-Soulsby: I'm probably one the most sensible along with Anna. Everyone's quite crazy in their own way but Shequila [Joseph] and Evelyn [Adebayo] can be very crazy and especially when they're fighting!
Bravo-Harriott: Anna [Forsyth] and Harriet (Ottewill-Soulsby) are the most sensible, whilst Shequila and Evelyn are the craziest.

What is the best basketball game you have played in and why?
Ottewill-Soulsby: I really enjoyed suiting up for the senior GB team a few months ago and playing Greece. It was great to play in front of a home crowd and to be part of the team.
The 2011 U16 Finals against Germany when I hit five-of-six three-pointers and got 24 points, even though we sadly lost by two.

What are the most important things for a basketball player to have?
Bravo-Harriott: They need to have a great basketball IQ, have to be fit, a team player, have a great skill set (handles, passes and shot) and a passion/love for the game.
Ottewill-Soulsby: Warrior characteristics - for example being tough, constantly hustling and fighting. They should also be team players with a good IQ and have a lot of love for the game.


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