New Zealand Hoops – Q&A With Tiarna Clarke

📷 @UNC

What is your full name and where are you from?

Tiarna Clarke and I’m from Auckland, New Zealand. 

Why did you choose the amazing game of basketball? 

I originally chose basketball because I grew up going to my brothers basketball games as a kid and so then I built an interest in the game from that point. We had a basketball hoop at our house and I would spend most of my time playing around. 

Basketball was enjoyable to play and then I realised that it provided many opportunities. Through the game I was fortunate enough to travel around the world and met some amazing people who have become family. 

What school did you attend? and what were your achievements and highlights?

I attended Westlake Girls High School and then did a short stint at the University of Northern Colorado. During my time at UNCO, we were the regular season champs and we won the Big Sky Conference tournament. 

You are a role model for young women, what advice do you have for them getting into basketball?

Always do what’s best for you even if others don’t always agree. Constantly put in the work and find different ways to make things fun/enjoyable. Know that basketball can be played at many different levels/divisions, it’s just about finding what’s best suited for you. 

What has been the ultimate highlight so far in your career? 

My favourite highlight would probably have to be winning the Big Sky Conference tournament with my parents in attendance. They are and always be my biggest supporters regardless of the decisions I make or whether or not I win or lose. I’m grateful that they worked hard to be in a position where they attended almost every single game of mine. 

Where do you see women’s basketball in the next five years? 

It would be good to see the women’s game gaining more exposure and opportunities like men’s basketball. I think the more support and funding we receive not just at the highest level but in the community will be beneficial because of the growing talent and participation numbers we’ve seen recently. 

Who is the ultimate women’s basketball player in New Zealand?

This is a hard question. The player who I see that has the most potential in New Zealand would have to be Charlisse Leger-Walker. 

Are you playing basketball at the moment and what are your plans for the future?

I’m currently playing with AUT University and am still associated with Harbour Basketball. 

In terms of the future, my main focus is on finishing off university. I’m also hoping to find my love and passion for basketball that I had when I was younger. 



Published by Jesse Wallis

Basketball Journalist

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