Ireland international Orla O’Reilly knows a win is ‘a must’ against The Netherlands at The National Basketball Arena this Sunday, as James Weldon’s squad assembled ahead of their FIBA Women’s EuroBasket 2023 qualifier.
“We are definitely going in looking to win,” O’Reilly said. The 32-year-old is back in the fold following a 13-year absence and has been incredibly enthused by the potential she has found in her teammates upon her return. “I think we’ve had a really positive couple of days preparing so far. We have a really good team and added a super player in Bridget (Herlihy), who is playing professionally in Sweden. The girls playing in the MissQuote.ie Super League are also having amazing an amazing season with the points they’re putting up. So, when you compare that to the last time we played The Netherlands, I think we’re in a really good place to get the win.”
Sunday’s 5:15pm tip-off sold out almost a week in advance, a fact not lost on O’Reilly. She’s all too aware that a vociferous support in the stands can make all the difference in a close contest. “Like James (Weldon) told us, that’s ten points in your pocket if you can get the crowd behind you, and they will be. It’s going to be all our fans which is massive. We know they’ll just want us to come out and play for them and we will do that no matter what the score line is. We are going to compete, be really proud to play for Ireland and show that we can compete at this level. I really think we are going to come out and play a good game.” O’Reilly added.
You can watch Ireland v Netherlands this Sunday live on TG4 from 1700.
Ireland senior women’s squad:
Ciara Bracken (Leixlip Amenities Liffey Celtics)*, Michelle Clarke (Killester), Dayna Finn (Trinity Meteors), Bridget Herlihy (Mark Basket Marbo Kinna, Sweden), Sarah Hickey (Waterford Wildcats)*, Rachel Huijsdens (DCU Mercy), Claire Melia (Trinity Meteors), Áine O’Connor (Leixlip Amenities Liffey Celtics), Orla O’Reilly (Waverly Falcons, Australia), Edel Thornton (Singleton SuperValu Brunell) (captain), Hannah Thornton (DCU Mercy), Sorcha Tiernan (Leixlip Amenities Liffey Celtics).
FIBA Women’s EuroBasket 2023 Qualifiers
Sunday, November 27th
Ireland v Netherlands, National Basketball Arena, Dublin, 1715, LIVE ON TG4 from 1700