New Zealand Hoops – Q&A with Micaela Cocks

What is your full name and where are you from?

Micaela Claire Cocks
Auckland, New Zealand

Why did you choose the game of basketball?

I started playing basketball in the Under 16 age group for North Harbour. Throughout primary school and intermediate school, I was a child who played any and every sport being offered, from soccer to snowboarding and even the odd barrel racing event. When it was suggested that I attend the North Harbour u16s try outs I thought I would give it a go and luckily enough made the team based on my fitness ability, not my basketball skills. I quickly became dedicated and slightly obsessed with wanting to improve and set the goal to become the best basketball player I could be. From this point on I focused solely on basketball and loved it.

What schools did you attend, and what were your achievements and highlights?

I went to Northcross Intermediate school, Rangitoto College, a short stint at Takapuna Grammar and then accepted an offer to attend the University of Oregon.
My highlights of high school looking back would be the amount of time and effort I put in to being an athlete and seeing the drastic improvements I made. My experience at Oregon was incredible and probably, top 4 years of my life. It was not just the basketball but the overall life experience I had.

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

The advice I like to give to young men and women is to find your passion and put the time towards being the best you can be. You do not have to be “the best” but focus on being “your best”.

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

My ultimate highlight of my career would be playing in the Beijing Olympics and winning x3 WNBL Championships.

p.s I thoroughly enjoyed winning the 3×3 Asia Cup (specifically beating Australia 😊 )

Who has been your biggest influence in basketball and why?

There is not a specific person who has been my biggest influence. My imagination, passion and self-driven goals have been the backbone of influencing me in basketball.

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

Donna Wilkins (nee Loffhagen). Her ability to lead, compete and win is unrivalled.

What is the key to a strong healthy work ethic?

I have used this word a lot, but I really believe the key to a strong and healthy work ethic is “passion”. If you are passionate and want it, you will put the hard work in. If you are doing it because “you” want to and not for some else, then it is healthy.

After you retire from basketball will you pursue basketball in a different shape and form?

I enjoy taking individual basketball and fitness sessions and would I would be open to coaching as an assistant.

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

Pero Cameron. Not only his skill set but his ability to outsmart his opponents and his basketball brain is ultimate.

Where would you like to Womens basketball globally in the next five years?

Qualifying for world and Olympic events. No longer being the team that does not qualify of the big events. Competing and beating Australia!

Whats the best pair of basketball shoes you have owned?

Adidas Pro Models

If you have one piece of advice for your younger self, what would it be?

To enjoy each day as it comes and not worry as much about things I could not control.

In terms of basketball what would be the pinnacle for you?

Beating Australia in a gold medal match at a future Olympics.

Is the sky really the limit for the Tall Ferns?

We have the potential to be big improvers in international basketball. Winning and medals!

#BuildTheCulture 🏀

Published by Jesse Wallis

Basketball Journalist

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