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Sporting Schools School Yard to Sports Star: Rachel Jarry

Rachel Jarry

Image: Rachel Jarry, Dual Olympian and Australian Opal



What are your memories of playing sport at school? Did you play any other sports? 

I remember playing many different sports at school. I always loved being part of a team and playing with friends. As well as basketball I played netball, softball, newcombe/volleyball, AFL and lacrosse. There were probably more that I’m forgetting!


How did you get started in the sport of basketball?

I started playing at school and then my Mum started a domestic club out of my primary school so some other friends and I could play. My first team was an Under 8 mixed team where the boys on my team played ‘keepings off’ with the girls! Fair to say I learnt to play defence pretty quickly so I could get the ball back off my own team mates.


When did you realise that you could compete at the highest level?

I always had that goal and once I was in my late teens I realised it was a possibility. However, I probably never really believed I would until I actually got the call up to the Opals squad at age 19.


What was it like being selected for the Australian squad at such a young age with many older team mates?

It was a bit intimidating but also very humbling. I had played for the Bulleen Boomers in the WNBL with some amazing veteran team mates so I knew how valuable learning from experienced players would be. The older Opals girls really helped me find my feet and were always so supportive. I’m very grateful for the team mates I had as they made me feel so comfortable in a very intense environment.


What are your top 3 tips to children about playing sport?

  1. Play a range of different sports. It’s fun to try different things and you might find something you like that you wouldn’t expect!
  2. Always have good sportsmanship. Whether you win or lose, make sure you shake your opponent’s hand and thank the referees.
  3. Enjoy yourself! Sport is fun and you should always be having a good time.


To read more about the Sporting Schools Basketball program click here