Greater Noida: Athens Olympics gold medallist and two-time WNBA champion Ruth Riley is giving back to the sport that propelled her to the world stage during her heydays.
The best way to serve the sport is to shape up the young talent hopeful of making the ranks and Ruth does it diligently working with raw talent at her disposal.
“We didn’t know what to expect from the Indian girls who were picked for the NBA Academy’s Basketball Without Borders Asia camp, but they have been good learners,” Ruth told mediapersons on the Day 3 of the camp, which will end on Saturday.
“It was an amazing experience to get the chance to work with these young girls. Basketball infrastructure like this at the NBA Academy is needed to create interest in the sport in a country like India,” she said.
Ruth comes from the United States where “basketball is played by almost everyone. It was way of life for me, but these girls are ready to learn and very hardworking,” said Ruth.
There were 18 Indian girls in the Asia Camp, which was being held in India after a gap of 10 years. The camp brings together the young prospects and NBA stalwarts, who teach nuances of the sport and share their experience.
Among the Indian girls, there were two from Maharashtra—Siya Deodhar of Nagpur and Khushi Dongre of Aurangabad—and Ruth had positive thoughts about the two and their future.
“They will need to work hard to achieve their dreams but the way they showed eagerness to learn during these three days I am sure both Siya and Khushi will one day be part of the Indian National team.
“One good thing is that they have started playing the sport at a young age. This gives them time to develop skills and be ready for bigger challenges,” said Ruth.