Irish international basketball player and Mayo LGFA star Dayna Finn is looking forward to the opportunity of earning her first senior international cap for Ireland at this summer’s FIBA European Championship for Small Countries.
The talented dual-star was named on James Weldon’s 12-woman squad this week, and she will be joined by fellow senior debutante, Rachel Huijsdens, along with a host of familiar names from across underage international basketball, schools basketball and the Women’s National League when they line out in Cyprus this August.
Dayna Finn anticipating Irish debut
The news came on Wednesday evening of this week, and for Finn – who has been a standout for Ireland for many years at underage level, boasting two European medals and promotions to Division A basketball – it is really a dream come true.
"I’m delighted to be selected onto the Irish senior women’s team,” she said speaking following the announcement of Pinergy’s three-year extension of their Official Energy and Official Insights partnership deal with Basketball Ireland, which also saw them unveiled as the new All-Ireland Schools Cup sponsor.
I’m thrilled to get the opportunity to play for my country again surrounded by an incredible bunch! It’s always a privilege to wear the Irish jersey and I can’t wait to compete in Cyprus. I’m really looking forward to getting my first senior cap. It’s great to be playing alongside rather than against some of the top players in Irish basketball. We’re constantly learning more and more from one another every session and the experience is great.
Training and preparations for Euros are going really well. We've been training now the last nine weeks as a group and though it was strange coming from individual training back into team training, there’s really nothing better than the team aspect of it. It has been a tough 16 months or so though. I had Hazel, my sister, at home so the two of us were training together and it was good to have that extra person to do things with, so we just kept training away. We were lucky to have a gym in the house, and the country roads to run on and a hoop outside! It was tough, but we got it done and it’s all benefiting now on the court. I’m delighted to be back – but it was a nice break too I must say!
Despite the long break though, it has definitely shown her how important sport is, particularly for younger people.
For kids, it’s so important to try any sport. When I was younger I picked up every sport going and then decided on my two, but it is really important for your mental health and even just for fun! I’d encourage any kid to try a sport, as it builds you up for life and you can get some once in a life time opportunities.
Finn will be joined by a host of seasoned and up-and-coming young talent in the Irish squad, with stalwarts Grainne Dwyer, Claire Rockall and Aine McKenna all featuring in the line up, alongside the hugely successful underage stars including Finn, Huijsdens, Claire Melia and Sorcha Tiernan. The line-up is completed with a strong cast in Aine O’Connor, Michelle Clarke, Edel Thornton, Fiona O’Dwyer and Hannah Thornton.
Ireland will tip off in Nicosia, Cyprus in this year’s FIBA European Championship for Small Countries on July 20th, and will face Andorra, Malta and Norway in a tough Pool A.
Irish International Basketball player Dayna Finn pictured as Pinergy was announced as the new official sponsor of the All-Ireland Schools Cup competition, following the extension of its Official Energy and Official Insights partnership with Basketball Ireland in a three-year deal. To mark the exciting news, Pinergy also launched a special competition that will give schools across the country the chance to win key basketball equipment as they help to #PowerTheDifference to ensure that schools are well-equipped ahead of the opening games of the All-Ireland Schools Cup this September. For more details, follow Pinergy on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.