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More wins for Timms

BASKETBALL Australia has elevated the sport's premier pioneer Michele Timms to "Legend" status.

Timms, or "Timmsy" as most who know her affectionately refer to her, this year was elected into the FIBA Hall of Fame, laying the foundation for her acknowledgement and elevation at home.

Across 285 WNBL games, the livewire point guard won five WNBL championships and was in the WNBL All Star Five seven times. 

As an Opal, she represented Australia in 264 international matches encompassing three Olympics - Seoul 1988, Atlanta 1996 and Sydney 2000 - and four FIBA World Championships, 1986-90-94-98.

Timms was part of Australia's transition from an emerging presence on the world scene to an international powerhouse.

In 1988 Australia reached the bronze medal match, in 1996 it won a bronze and in 2000, under her captaincy, the Opals won silver.

Timms also blazed the trail into Europe as a pro, and also into the WNBA where, at Phoenix Mercury, her #7 singlet not only outsold her NBA Phoenix Suns equivalent Kevin Johnson, but ultimately was retired by the franchise.

"To be elevated to Legend status is a prestigious honour that I am truly overwhelmed to be receiving,” Timms said.

"I am overawed when I look at the current Basketball Australia Legends, people that are synonymous with basketball in this country like Gaze, Watson, Ramsay and Raschke.

“It is a special feeling to be named alongside them."

A WNBL player with Bulleen, Nunawading, Perth and Sydney, annually Melbourne Boomers and Dandenong Rangers compete for the cup named in her honour.

Past players Perry Crosswhite, Jeanie Kupsch, Liesl Tesch and Jenny Whittle also will be inducted by BA into the Hall on November 25 in Melbourne.

The quartet represented Australia at five Olympic and five Paralympic Games, winning three silver and two bronze medals between them.

Whittle won two WNBL championships and was awarded Life Membership in 2006, her pull-up 3-pointer at the top of the key as the last player down in transition still surprising teams to the day she retired.

Crosswhite - known then as "Rocky" - was a major star with Melbourne Church before naturalising, continuing his post-Boomers career as a pioneer in the establishment of professional sports administration in Australia, helping establish a national league with paid players in the 1980s.

Kupsch and Tesch are trailblazers of the women’s game, the former notable as one of the first great exponents of the jump shot. Tesch became the first Australian woman to play professional wheelchair basketball in Europe in the early 2000s.

Contributors Ronald Harvey and the late Ken Watson will be inducted alongside those four players, along with the solitary coach going into the Hall this year, Patrick Hunt.

Noted for his 15 years at the AIS, Hunt had more the 300 games worth of involvement with Australian teams at FIBA World Junior Championships and World University Games as well as an assistant coach of the Boomers from 1989-1992.

The 2016 Basketball Australia Hall of Fame Class

Perry Crosswhite AM
Jeanie Kupsch
Liesl Tesch AM
Jenny Whittle

Patrick Hunt AM

Ronald Harvey AM
Ken Watson BEM

Michele Timms

Oct 18

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