New Zealand's most talented senior male and female high school basketballers have gathered in Auckland this week for the Steven Adams High School Invitational.
During the high performance camp the players are working with some of New Zealand's leading coaches and mentors, including Adams.
At the end of the week, the players involved will travel to Christchurch where they will have the chance to showcase their talent in games played in the lead-up to the Sal's NBL Final 4 on Saturday and Sunday at Horncastle Arena. These games will be broadcast live on Sky Sport.
Among the 48 students selected for the camp are Rotorua Boys' High School's Nabil Kone, 18, Sharne Perham, 18, and Jared Hamilton, 17, Mount Maunganui College's William Henry, Tauranga Boys' College's Jeremy McIntosh, and Pāpāmoa's Shalom Broughton, who attends St Kentigern College in Auckland, making up six of the 24 senior boys selected. Mount Maunganui College's Jada Beckham is the only Bay of Plenty student selected as one of 24 senior girls.
Hamilton said he would be making the most of the opportunity.
"It's a massive opportunity for us three from Rotorua to play against the big dogs up in Auckland and from all around New Zealand, there will be good competition.
"There will be some combine testing and training before we fly to Christchurch [tomorrow]."
The camp is an opportunity to showcase the young talent of New Zealand to off-shore audiences and create opportunities for young players to pursue USA college scholarships, degrees and basketball opportunities. It covers the on and off court skills necessary to pursue US college scholarships.
Perham said he was eager to show, as a group, that Rotorua had a lot of basketball talent.
"They don't really know much about us so it will be great to compete against the top athletes in New Zealand. We want to show what we've got.
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"It's a bit overwhelming but overall you just have to stay confident and have confidence in yourself."
Kone was looking forward to testing himself against the best players in the country.
"For me to see where I am as an athlete because I'll be competing against the best of the best in New Zealand. I will know my mistakes and what I need to work on."
He said it was exciting to know there would be scouts from overseas attending but knew he had to stay focused.
The trio trained at Rotorua Boys' High School every day during the first week of school holidays to ensure they were in top shape for the camp.
"We've been doing a lot of skill work and stuff that will help us while we're there."
Rotorua Boys' High School basketball director Theo Tait said having three players selected for the camp was "very exciting for the school".
"They've worked hard to be recognised, our whole team has worked hard. The organisers got in touch and asked us to nominate players and these three have the style we think the whole Steven Adams culture is about - good athletes, exciting players to watch. They all have the x-factor in different ways."
He said athletic ability and skill were not the only considerations in the selection, he had to be sure the players who went would make the most of the opportunity.
Rotorua Boys' High School's senior A basketball team is enjoying a successful season and building nicely towards nationals later this year.
"We play in the Waikato competition, we're undefeated there and we've beaten teams quite convincingly. We've played three or four top Auckland schools, we beat the top team Saint Kentigern College. We go up there just to test our boys out."
The team has a busy couple of months ahead.
"Next term we're back into the second round of the Waikato competition and then we have Super 8 coming up, that starts at the start of August. We were third in the Super 8 last year, we lost to Napier in the semis by a point, but we're top contenders this year. We've got the whole squad back so it's a lot more experienced.
"After that we start building for nationals which is the top 24 schools in the country. Last year was our first year back at nationals, the big goal was to get there and we finished 16th. Our expectation this year is to make at least the top four but at the same time we want to win it."
Steven Adams High School Invitational Participants:
Kopere Tanoa (Palmerston North Boys' High School), Te Tuaio Rautangata (Nga Taiatea Wharekura), Sataan Tawera (Mount Albert Grammar School), Tysxun Aiolupotea (Nayland College), Alex McNaught (Saint Kentigern College), Preston Karatau (Liston College), Sharne Perham (Rotorua Boys' High School), Robert Coman (Kings College), Jaga Mete-Smith (Auckland Grammar School), Devon Mills (Whanagarei Boys' High School), Clifton Bush III (Napier Boys' High School), Shalom Broughton (Saint Kentigern College), Nathan Wilson (Mount Albert Grammar School), Louis Oskam (Cashmere High School), Nabil Kone (Rotorua Boys' High School), Jack Andrew (St Kevin's College), Finn Lally (St John's College), Mac Stodart (St Andrew's College), Mason Whittaker (Christ's College), Jared Hamilton (Rotorua Boys' High School), William Henry (Mount Maunganui College), Kobe Kara (Napier Boys' High School), Levick Kerr (Saint Kentigern College), Jeremy McIntosh (Tauranga Boys' College).
Jayzelee Waihi (St Peter's School), Leata Te Nana-Williams (St Mary's College), Ashleigh Kells (Palmerston North Girls' High School), Helen Mathews (Kaiapoi High School), Hannah Wentworth (Rangitoto College), Jordyn Maddix (Westlake Girls' High School), River Walker-Pitman (Hamilton Girls' High School), Tayla Dalton (Carmel College), Koha a te Atua Lewis (Hamilton Girls' High School), Riana Matiseni (St Mary's College), Jessica Moors (Westlake Girls' High School), Raquel Sampson (Sacred Heart Girls' College), Ashlee Strawbridge (Rangi Ruru Girls' School), Ella Bradley (St Peter's School), Zaaliyah Kailahi-Fulu (St Mary's College), Jazzmyne Kailahi-Fulu (St Mary's College), Dominique Stephens (St Peter's School), Paris Lokotui (Queen Margaret College), Rochelle Fourie (Manukura), Hannah Matehaere (Otago Girls' High School), Safenunuivao Te Nana-Williams (St Mary's College), Jada Beckham (Mount Maunganui College), Rashaan Smith (Birkenhead College), Quaye Walker-Eketone (Hamilton Girls' High School).