Leger-Walkers Named to New Zealand National Team Roster for the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup
WELLINGTON, New Zealand – The Washington State women's basketball sister duo from New Zealand will represent their home country at the 2021 FIBA Women's Asia Cup, as both Charlisse Leger-Walker and Krystal Leger-Walker were selected to the Tall Ferns' final 12-player roster for the event. Games will take place Sept. 27 – Oct. 3 in Amman, Jordan.
The Leger-Walker sisters burst onto the scene in their first season on the Palouse, as Charlisse became the second WSU women's basketball player ever to be named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, while Krystal earned All-Pac-12 Defensive team honors and led the conference in total assists. Charlisse is the top returning scorer in the Pac-12 this season, as she averaged 18.8 points per game a season ago. Krystal is also the Pac-12's top returner in assists after handing out 4.5 assists per game last year.
This marks the second-straight FIBA Women's Asia Cup appearance for Charlisse Leger-Walker, as she previously played for her home country at the 2019 Asia Cup in India. Charlisse is the youngest player to ever suit up for the Tall Ferns, having been a member of the national team roster since she was 16 years old. Meanwhile, this will be Krystal Leger-Walker's first FIBA event suiting up for the Tall Ferns after playing for the New Zealand national program at the U-18 and U-19 levels.
New Zealand is slotted in Group A at the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup along with Japan, South Korea and India. All games will be played at the Prince Hamza Arena in Amman, Jordan. The Tall Ferns open group play Sept. 27 against South Korea, then takes on Japan on Sept. 28, before wrapping up group play with India on Sept. 29. The top-three team of each group will advance to a tournament play, which begins Sept. 30 and ends Oct. 3. Teams that finish first, second and third at the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup will advance to the 2022 FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup, which takes place next fall in Australia.
The Leger-Walker sisters become the fifth players from Washington State to represent their home country in a FIBA event this summer. Junior Bella Murekatete guided Rwanda to the semifinals of the 2021 FIBA Women's Basketball Afrobasket Zone V qualifiers in her home country back in July. Meanwhile, sophomore Jessica Clarke and incoming freshman Tara Wallack helped Canada finish fifth at the U-19 FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup in Hungary back in August.
The Washington State women's basketball team will kick-off the 2021-22 season Nov. 9 against San Jose State in Beasley Coliseum. The Cougars will play a pair of exhibition contests in Pullman to prepare for the upcoming season, as WSU will host Saint Martin's Oct. 24 and Northwest Nazarene Nov. 5. Fans can purchase season tickets now by clicking the link here.
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