22 Jul 2011

Breakers stars join teen towers in Tall Blacks trials

8:02 am on 22 July 2011

Seven members of the Australian basketball league champion Breakers side have been named to try out for the New Zealand senior men's team in a three-day camp next week in Auckland.

Seventeen players including two high school students will battle for 12 spots and the chance to be in the side to take on Australia later this year for an Olympic place in London.

The youngsters are 17-year-olds Isaac Fotu and Steven Adams.

Fotu is a Breakers development player who stands 1.98 metres tall and attends Rangitoto College on Auckland's North Shore while Adams, who's related to shotputter Valerie Adams, stands 2.10 metres and attends Scotts College in Wellington.

Adams recently played for the national domestic NBL winning team, the Wellington Saints, and will be heading to the Pittsburgh Panthers at the University of Pittsburgh in the Big East Conference.

Breakers stars Kirk Penney, Mika Vukona, Alex Pledger and Tom Abercrombie are expected to make the team along with NBL star Lindsay Tait, while naturalised American Casey Frank and former national representative Mark Dickel are also trialling.

Missing from last year's world champs team are Pero Cameron and Phill Jones who have both retired, while Craig Bradshaw is unavailable and Jeremy Kench injured.

The trials will be held from July 27th to the 29th at the Breakers gym on the North Shore, before a team camp and then the Stankovic Cup tournament in China featuring the home team along with Angola and Russia.

The Tall Blacks then travel to Italy for a training camp before a tournament in Macedonia and another tournament in Turkey.

The Oceania series against Australia will be held 7th, 9th and 11th of September in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane respectively.

2011 Tall Blacks trial players:

Tom Abercrombie (Waikato), Steven Adams (Wellington), Benny Anthony (Waikato), Everard Bartlett (Auckland), Mark Dickel (Southland), Michael Fitchett (Nelson), Isaac Fotu (Breakers), Casey Frank (Wellington), Leon Henry (Wellington), Jarrod Kenny (Hawkes Bay), Morgan Natanahira (Hawkes Bay), Kirk Penney (Breakers), Alex Pledger (Waikato), Lindsay Tait(Wellington), Jeremiah Trueman (Manawatu), Mika Vukona (Nelson), Corey Webster (Wellington).