July 3, 2019

India's Srishti Suren will be taking her talents to Canada to play for the University of Winnipeg

The dam has broken, and basketball talent is oozing out. After many recent success stories of young Indian women heading abroad for college basketball opportunities, another rising star joins the list. 19-year-old Srishti Suren will become the first Indian woman to play high-level college ball in Canada. The University of Winnipeg announced on Tuesday that Suren has committed to the Wesmen for the 2019-20 season and will have five years of eligibility.

Suren, a 5'11 forward from Chennai, most-recently represented India at the 2018 FIBA Asia U18 Championship for Women held in Bengaluru. She averaged 10.4 points and 4.4 rebounds per game and helped the squad win Division B in front of the home fans. Suren also played for India's side at the 2016 version of the FIBA U18 ABC and the 2015 FIBA U16 ABC. She has been a part of the Tamil Nadu under-age teams since she was a sub-junior player.

Suren now joins a number of young Indian women who have recently played or committed to play in universities in North America, including Kavita Akula, Barkha Sonkar, Sanjana Ramesh, and Vaishnavi Yadav. According to ChrisD.ca Winnipeg News, Suren was initially recruited to play for NCAA Division I San Francisco for last season, but was unable to pursue a roster spot because of commitments to Team India at the FIBA U18 Asia Championship.

According to the official website of the Winnipeg Wesmen, Suren will enroll in Psychology and plans to minor in neuroscience.

"I feel my international experience has given me more confidence to face the court globally and taught me how important communication on and off court with my team is," said Suren. "Playing internationally has also developed my friendship skills on and off the court, which I will help me have a good understanding with my teammates. I've been wanting to fly high in life and I think this is one step closer to my dreams of playing in one of the top basketball leagues in the future."

Based in Manitoba, the Winnipeg Wesmen play in the Canada West University Athletics Association of the U Sports in Canada. The Women's basketball team won a three-peat of national championships in Canada in the mid-90s, but haven't made a finals appearance since 2006. Last year the Wesmen Women ended their season with an 8-12 record.

"We're getting a kid who's played FIBA international, has a lot of basketball under her belt and has travelled the world so she's not afraid to leave to play," said Tanya McKay, head coach of Wesmen Women, on the team's official website. "She comes here with five years of eligibility, so I think the timing is great for the program."

"She just plays so athletic... She can hit the three, she can drive, she defends well and uses her length. She's a kid who's played a lot of basketball and I think that's contagious. She's coming to play basketball, so she'll help elevate practices and be driven to compete."


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