Tall Ferns duo in Gold Rush squad for 3x3 tournament

Otago’s Zoe Richards in action for the Tall Ferns on her debut tour in Taiwan last year. PHOTO:...
Tall Fern Zoe Richards will play for the Otago Gold Rush in the NBL 3x3 tournament. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES
The Otago Gold Rush will be able to draw on international experience in Invercargill next month.

Two Tall Ferns have been included in the four-player squad to play at the National Basketball League’s 3x3 tournament.

Zoe Richards headlines a team that also includes former international forward Lisa Wallbutton.

Tara Clement and Aleisha Ruske make up the guard line-up.

Richards (23) gives the team a genuine star and current Tall Fern.

The Dunedin women’s club league’s most valuable player, the forward is coming off a dominant winter in which she posted 24.0 points per game.

Her ability to both score inside, as well as shoot from deep will be key in the 3x3 format.

Wallbutton brings plenty of experience, having played for the Tall Ferns from 2005 to 2016.

That included winning a silver medal at the 2006 Commonwealth Games, as well as playing at the Beijing 2008 Olympics.

The 34-year-old, in her first year in Dunedin, brings a classy presence inside.

Ruske and Clement both bring plenty of national league experience to the guard line-up.

Ruske (23) has played for the Gold Rush since 2013 and provides an exceptional perimeter defender, while also boasting a handy offensive skill set.

Clement makes her first appearance for the Gold Rush, having played three seasons with the Taranaki Thunder — although has lived in Dunedin.

The team’s schedule for the women’s NBL, set to begin the week after 3x3, has also been released.

It will play double-headers on each of November 23-24 and November 28-29, as well as a single game on December 3.

All five games will tip-off at 7.30pm.

Semifinals follow on December 4-5, with the final set for 5pm on December 6.

Six teams will contest the league, all playing each other once before the playoffs and a game scheduled every day for 18 days.

All games will be played at one venue, which is expected to be confirmed this week.

 

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