Trainer to take Pilbara basketballers to the ‘next level’

Alicia PereraPilbara News
Basketball WA Pilbara regional development officer Samantha Dell’Orso.
Camera IconBasketball WA Pilbara regional development officer Samantha Dell’Orso. Credit: Alicia Perera

There is no shortage of basketball talent in the Pilbara, and up-and-coming players have just received a boost with the appointment of a trainer dedicated to developing promising players in the region.

The first basketball regional development officer role for the Pilbara has been created by Basketball WA, with former professional player Samantha Dell’Orso taking up the position from the beginning of last month.

Dell’Orso said her goal was to hone local basketballers’ skills to help them become contenders for a higher level of play, for example with State or Perth metropolitan teams.

“In the Pilbara region, basketball is a really big outlet for a lot of kids here, but there aren’t many associations or places for these kids to play basketball,” she said.

“There are some super-talented kids with nowhere to go — they get to a certain age but then stop because there are no other avenues for their development.”

“My role is to develop these kids and create pathways for (them) to give them an opportunity to take their basketball to the next level.”

Dell’Orso has played basketball professionally with the Perth Lynx and in Britain, Denmark and the Netherlands, and previously represented WA in the State women’s and State metropolitan leagues.

Dell’Orso is based in Karratha but will be working with basketball associations and players in all towns within the region, including in Roebourne, Wickham, Port Hedland, Onslow and Pannawonica.

Karratha Basketball Association president Cassie Perry said the position’s creation had been prompted by the large number of KBA teams to attend the WA Country Championships in the past few years and their relative success.

“The South West has this kind of representation and for us to get it up here, it shows Basketball WA is really taking notice of the Pilbara,” she said.

“They can see there’s talent here; now we’ve got to develop it and we’ve got to make (our players) as good as every other association’s.”

At this stage Dell’Orso’s role is three days a week but is expected to become full-time next year.

Her position is being funded 50-50 by Basketball WA and the KBA

The role is an addition to existing Basketball WA regional development officer positions in other regions including the Kimberley, Mid West and Great Southern.

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