The 3×3 Tall Ferns have locked in their third stop of the FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series – this time in Quebec from 18-19 August, where some familiar faces have been added to the squad.
The 3×3 Tall Ferns for Quebec will include: Tiarna Clarke, Chevannah Paalvast, Emme Shearer and Ash Taia.
Chevannah Paalvast headlines this list, having played 60 games for the Tall Ferns in the 5 on 5 setting, including a bronze medal finish at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Paalvaast is also no stranger to the 3×3 discipline, as she was a member of the Tall Ferns 3×3 Gold medal-winning team at the FIBA 2018 Asia Cup in China.
Sharpshooter Tiarna Clarke returns to the 3×3 scene for the first time this year, having represented New Zealand with the 3×3 Tall Ferns in 2022 – at both the 3×3 World Cup in Belgium and the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
Another veteran joining the squad is Ash Taia, who has made 14 appearances for the Tall Ferns including the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup and the Tall Ferns tour of Europe in June this year. She makes her 3×3 Tall Ferns debut alongside her Logan Thunder teammate Paalvast, with the pair winning the inaugural NBL1 North basketball championship in 2021.
And University of Portland’s Emme Shearer returns to the squad, following her 3×3 Tall Ferns debut in the FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series in Edmonton, Canada last month.
Coach Reed is intrigued by the makeup of this 3×3 squad for the Quebec stop.
“Tiarna has battled a major shoulder injury since late last year and it’s been a long recovery for her; this is the first time she’s been able to get some 3×3 action this year. We’re really looking forward to getting her back in the mix as she’s an important part of the 3×3 family,” says Reed.
“At our last stop, Emme’s athleticism and ability to score inside and out was great, she has good length which complements the other players in our squad; having her alongside Chevy [Chevannah] and Ash will make us a lot taller and bigger, as we were outsized at times during the last stop.
“Chevy hasn’t played international 3×3 basketball for a while now, but she was at the Schick 3×3 Cup last year with the Kahu [losing in the final]; she’s been on my radar for a while but our calendars haven’t been able to align until now. She is definitely someone I’ve wanted to be part of our team so we’re fortunate to have her on board.
“Ash is someone we reached out to see if she’d be interested in 3×3, she’s got a great skillset that I believe is well suited to 3×3. She could be a real diamond in the rough for us.”
Reed says that the 3×3 Women’s Series events play an important role in New Zealand’s bid to rise in the FIBA 3×3 rankings, which allows the 3×3 Tall Ferns to qualify for pinnacle events such as the 2024 Paris Olympics and 3×3 World Cups. It also gives her an opportunity to evaluate different athletes in the 3×3 setting as the Olympics looms closer.
“The aim for 2024 is to cement in a core 3×3 Tall Ferns group, so it’s been good to how a lot of these payers perform at the international level; it’s not ideal having a new team each tournament but it’s been good for me to see how they operate and what they can do.’
The FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series tips off in Quebec from 18-19 August, with New Zealand one of eight international teams in the competition – the Kiwis grouped with Canada, USA and Romania in Pool A. A top three finish in this pool means the 3×3 Tall Ferns will move onto the quarterfinal stage.
All games shown live at www.youtube.com/fiba3x3
3×3 Tall Ferns – 3×3 Women’s Series, Quebec 2023
Chevannah Paalvast, Logan Thunder
Emme Shearer, University of Portland
Ash Taia, Logan Thunder
Draw for 3×3 Women’s Series, Quebec 2023
Canada vs New Zealand, 7am NZT Sat 19 August
New Zealand vs Romania, 8.50am NZT Sat 19 August
New Zealand vs USA U24, 10.40am NZT Sat 19 August