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Brothers Lead Tall Blacks Campaign

Brothers Flynn and Tobias Cameron are part of the New Zealand Under-18 team that is taking the FIBA Oceania U18 Championship by storm. This was after the Junior Tall Blacks
07 Dec 2016 16:37
Brothers Lead Tall Blacks Campaign
From left, Flynn and Tobias Cameron at the Vodafone Arena, Suva yesterday. Photo: Justine Mannan

Brothers Flynn and Tobias Cameron are part of the New Zealand Under-18 team that is taking the FIBA Oceania U18 Championship by storm. This was after the Junior Tall Blacks thrashed Samoa 122-35 at the Vodafone Arena, Suva, yesterday.

They are the sons of Tall Black legend and Tall Black assistant coach Pero Cameron as they are playing for their country of birth for the first time despite the fact that they both live in Australia.

Their father helped put New Zealand on the global basketball map when he led the side to the bronze medal game at the 2002 FIBA Basketball World Cup held in the United States.

Flynn, 16, is the youngest in the 12-member squad but showed his dominance, speed and capabilities on the court shooting a total of 18 points. Being the youngest and the son of a living legend comes with a huge amount of pressure to perform but Flynn said, having his brother by his side is his motivation to do well in the team.

“There is always a bit of pressure and living up the expectations of my dad but I feel that my role in the team is helping me with that pressure because I am putting in just as much effort as the other boys,” he said.

“Playing with my brother is definitely a big help, we have been with each other since the beginning. It is always good to have a player by your side that knows you better than anyone else as well as holding the same values as you do and in my case that happens to be my brother.”

Flynn said to play for his country of birth for the first time did not come from his dad but rather a sense of pride for his country.

“I know my brother and I live in Australia and we are eligible to play for Australia but I think we made the right decision to play for New Zealand. A small part of it has something to do with my dad but most importantly I kind of like the colours of the New Zealand team better than the Australians and just that home country pride, I was born and bred there in New Zealand so I wanted to represent the land I come from.”

While most of the teams are solely focused on winning the championship and qualifying for the FIBA U19 World Cup in Cairo next year, the Junior Tall Blacks are looking to seek revenge from a heart-breaking loss to Australia in the final two years ago.

“Definitely one of the main goals is pulling a win against Australia and get our revenge, I think that aside from qualifying is one of the things the boys have set out for,” he said.

“We know it will be tough because Australia have also come prepared but those are one of my main objectives coming here.”

Playing in such an important tournament, older brother, Tobias, said their father has given them advice which has helped them a lot.

“I am glad to be here with my brother, of course everyone knows how important winning this tournament is and that is something we keep in the back of our minds. Our dad has given us good advice coming into this championships which has been really good for us and him and my mum are both proud of us.

“We are lucky to have someone who has played at the top level before and who knows what we go through so having dad there has been great. Both my brother and I want to take our basketball career further and make it to the top level and I think that all starts now with our performance here. But yeah, I am grateful for everything and for being here.”

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback:  justine.mannan@fijisun.com.fj

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