What is your full name and where are you from?
Krystal Hoana Leger-Walker
Mum is from Opotiki and my dad is from Tokoroa, with Maori and Samoan ethnicities.
Why did you choose the game of basketball?
I chose basketball because it is the best sport out there! Incorporates multiple different skills and you’re able to be involved in every part of the game, not limited to a position or area on the field/ court.
What schools have you attended? and what are your achievements and highlights?
St Peters School Cambridge (Highschool)
-Went from being smoked by 60+ to winning a national championship.
-Best thing about the team was the group of girls and how hard we worked and stuck together.
–Amie Russell was our “why” and who we won the National title for. We also won all 3 age group national championships in honor of her that year. Having 3 national MVPs on the team (which had never been done before) was also special.
University of Nothern Colorado (College in America – freshman to junior year)
-Won the Big Sky Conference (regular season and tournament)
-Went to the “big dance” / NCAA tournament (also known as March Madness)
Washington State University (College in America – redshirt and Senior year)
-Highlights so far: Being ranked in the AP top 25. Upsetting #8 Arizona.
You are a role model for young women, what advice do you have for them getting into basketball?
Take every opportunity basketball gives you, don’t be scared and don’t let one bad coach, experience, or game taint your passion.
What has been the ultimate highlight so far in your career?
Having my family and friends come to America to watch me play Div 1 basketball – shoutout to Ben!!
Who has been your biggest influence in basketball and why?
Leanne Walker – my mother. She’s the reason why I picked up a ball and why I have been so successful with it. She kept believing in me and pushing me when I wanted to quit and always picked me up after a bad game, loss or tour.
Where do you see women’s basketball in the next five years in New Zealand?
I HOPE to see women’s basketball receiving more support in the next five years, on a range of different levels – with funding, crowd and community engagement, equality to male athletes, respect from outsiders and exposure in the media.
Who is the ultimate women’s basketball player in New Zealand?
Charlisse Leger-Walker (might be biased).
Who is the ultimate men’s basketball player in New Zealand?
In terms of your playing career, what would be the pinnacle for you?
Pinnacle for me would be playing alongside both of my sisters for a championship.
What are the best pair of basketball shoes you have ever owned?
Gold And 1s when I was 10.
Who has been the hardest person to guard in your career and why?
Charlisse Leger-Walker. We know each other so well and can key in on each other’s weaknesses.
Who is the greatest player of all time and why?
Michael Jordan – He changed the game.
You are currently playing for the Washington State Cougars with your sister Charlisse, please tell me about this experience?
Very lucky and humbling to be on such a competitive stage with her. We’re achieving big things and it’s exciting to do it with each other!