Straight onto the court for Ballarat Rush's new player Steph Cumming

MARQUEE recruit Steph Cumming will step straight out of a national training camp and onto the court for her debut with Ballarat Rush in the South East Australian Basketball League.

Cumming is with the Australian Opals squad in Canberra.

Head coach Brendan Joyce is preparing the squad for World Women’s Basketball Championship in Turkey, with Australia drawing the same preliminary pool as South Korea, Cuba and Belarus.

Camp began on Sunday and finishes on Friday, providing Cumming with just enough time to join her new Ballarat teammates ahead of a season-opening clash with Brisbane Lady Spartans on Saturday night.

Rush head coach Peter Cunningham said although Cumming might be a little tired after an intensive week of training, he was confident she would be well prepared.

“She’s a thorough professional,” he said.

Cumming has had little time to rest up since playing in Townsville’s WNBL grand final loss to Bendigo on March 9.

After a week “off”, she managed to squeeze in a quick trip to Ballarat last week.

Cunningham said Cumming had two training sessions with Rush during the visit.

He said she did not take long to settle in, fitting in well with other players and almost immediately providing feedback on plays.

Cunningham said with not a lot of time on court, Cumming’s initial time in Ballarat had primarily been about familiarising herself with the new surrounds and getting to know the team.

Cumming, 23, will be part of an extremely young Rush squad in Brisbane, with most players in their teens.

One of the youngsters, Casey Burton, will make her SEABL debut with Rush, while Ash Stonehouse is returning after more than a season on the sidelines recovering from a serious knee injury.

david.brehaut@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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