Bourne ready for Thunder challenge

Isabelle Bourne (Daniel Pockett/Getty Images)

Tara Murray

The lure of being coached by Australia’s greatest ever female point guard, was enough to get rising star Isabelle Bourne to join Keilor Thunder.

Bourne, who returned to Australia this year from college, was the Thunder’s first big signing as they looked to get started in a new era under Harrower.

For Bourne, who is currently playing for the Adelaide Lightning in the Women’s National Basketball League, she’s excited by the new opportunity.

“The most exciting part to me is being able to play for Kristi Harrower,” she said. “She’s obviously like a legend in the game, really excited to learn from her.

“I’m really grateful, and starstruck a little bit too. Knowing that I’ve watched her growing up and now getting to play for her and she asked me to play for her, is a privilege.”

Bourne said she had heard really good things about the Thunder and its desire to develop young kids.

She said she had heard a lot of good things about the senior program as well.

Bourne has already travelled plenty of kilometres for her basketball.

She grew up in Canberra before she played with the Geelong Supercats in the NBL1 competition before she headed to America for college.

She also previously helped the under-19 national team to a silver medal at 2019 FIBA Under-19 World Cup in Bangkok, Thailand.

Bourne spent four years at the University of Nebraska where 12.6 points and 6.7 rebounds in her senior year.

“I loved it,” she said. “It was a really good four years at Nebraska and I had nothing but great things about the place.

“The development is unmatched. It’s a really great experience and I had a great time, but I was ready to come back home.”

Since returning to Australia, Bourne signed a two-year contract with the Adelaide Lightning.

Bourne said she was loving her time in the WNBL.

“It’s pretty much what I expected,” she said. “Going in, I kind of knew what expectations of myself I had.

“To do well and to come in and make a difference in the team.I’ve shown myself a lot and given myself a lot of confidence…just planning my way in Australian basketball.”

Bourne is averaging 30 minutes and 13 points a game, which she said was a bit more than was expected.

She said she just wanted to play her role for the team.

“To be playing the way I’m playing, proud of myself the way I’m playing.”

Bourne will have little rest inbetween the WNBL and NBL1 seasons.

She said it should be a good challenge.

“Kristi has created ateam that is going to have fun and work hard,” she said “The main key point she looks for is to develop a lot of players as well at the same time.

“I think I still have lot of growth and Im getting back tinto Australian basketball. I thik just finding ways to improve my game that fits in wth keilor and us ebing successful at keilor.

‘To have Maddy Rocci signed as well is really cool. I’m excited to work with her as well.”