Ballarat Rush star Joy Burke is spending the South East Australian Basketball League bye competing with Chinese Taipei in Taiwan.
She has spent the season so far aiming to balance her SEABL commitments with the intention of representing Taiwan’s national team.
Burke, who came to Australia from the United States, was born in Taiwan and is referred to by her Taiwanese name Hsi-le Bao in all formal documentation.
She is taking part in a pre-worlds qualifying series, playing for Chinese Taipei against Japan in a practice game, ahead of FIBA’s next qualification window.
Basketball Ballarat’s Nathan Cooper-Brown, who is athlete and coach development manager as well as head coach of the Ballarat Miners, said both organisations were working together to plan around her availability as much as possible.
“I’ve been in touch with her national coach for a few months now and we’re trying to make sure she remains a big part of their plans and what they’re trying to do,” Cooper-Brown said.
“For her to have an opportunity to go over and represent her country is fantastic… they want her to be involved as much as possible and this is an example of that.”
Burke’s ultimate goal is to represent Chinese Taipei in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.