Carla Leite Aims for Victory Against Bourges in LFB Play-offs Quarter Final

the essentials In the 5 major of the LFB and drafted immediately in 9th position by the American club of Dallas, the young leader of the TGB Carla Leite envisages the best possible match and the victory, this Thursday evening, against Bourges in the quarter final of the LFB play-offs.

Don’t be fooled by the number 0 who flocks his TGB jersey, Carla Leite is indeed a number 1 in French basketball this season.

Because elected in the 5 major LFB after having averaged 15.8 points (2.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 12.3 evaluation), the leader of the TGB also became the first Tarbes player drafted in the 1st tour by the WNBA, this Tuesday, April 16, the day of its 20th anniversary. A consecration for the 2023 European under-20 champion who does not hide having “achieved one of my objectives, the other in the short term being the Olympics”.

And before joining her new club Villeneuve-d’Ascq for next season, Carla Leite will try to complete her 2nd and final year in Tarbes in the best possible way, starting with a victory against Bourges, this evening, at the Quai de Adour.

Carla Leite, what gives you more pleasure: being the leader of the 5 major LFB or being drafted by Dallas?

The choice is complicated (smile) because, it is certain that being in the 5 major rewards my season with the TGB. But I still choose the WNBA Draft (American basketball championship) because it’s the best gift I could have had for my 20th birthday… It’s also a childhood dream and an ultimate goal that I have. I was fixed.

How are you going to organize yourself?

We talked about it with my agent, with the Dallas club and we agreed that I would only go next year so that I could devote myself entirely to the Olympic Games this summer… my main short-term objective.

Is being in the 5 major a ticket to the Olympic Games?

Frankly, I don’t know at all. It sure shows that I’m starting to improve because being in the 5 major is still something. But, I don’t think it’s decisive because the Olympics are really different.

I think I should prove things in the next training courses with the France team.

Is it still recognition of the work done?

Of course and it’s good to have an individual reward which rewards my season and even my two seasons with Tarbes. I came from the Lyon training center and objectively, I knew that if I stayed in Lyon as a Pro, I was not necessarily going to have too much playing time.

At the time, I made the bet to come to Tarbes having confidence in François (Gomez) and imagining that this would be the best project for me. And in the end, it turned out to be a winner.

Can we say that the TGB trusts its young players?

The TGB is renowned for training and trusting young people and I find it important to have a club with this spirit in the French first division. Afterwards, I knew François Gomez because I had done a detection course in Tarbes and I had an exchange with him who wanted me to come when I was 15.

For me, at the time, it was better to join the Lyon training center but I had kept this exchange in the back of my mind and when choosing a first professional contract, it made the difference.

Were you not disappointed?

No, I’m happy to have stayed two seasons at TGB and I think I had the best two seasons possible here. I really don’t regret anything and having a lot of playing time allowed me to progress more quickly. I think we progress more in matches than during training. All these little things allowed me to evolve and reach the level of basketball that I have today.

Did you feel that the Tarbes public was behind you?

I think people got attached to me and the opposite is true too. I have the TGB volunteers in my heart, great people and it will be fun to leave.

Afterwards, I hope I can say goodbye to all these people who will always remain in the back of my mind. And I will always keep good memories of this adventure.

With the play-offs, your season is not over. How are you approaching the match against Bourges this Thursday evening?

We want to create a surprise and win.

There, we are training really hard and I think we are ready to face this good team from Bourges. We have every chance and we will do everything to win. We lost our last confrontation by 7 points (75-82) and that should give us confidence. We must say to ourselves that it is no longer at all the same challenge as in the regular season because, there, we will be playing for a semi-final. This should motivate us even more.

Personally, how do you see this match?

I have a project elsewhere (Villeneuve-d’Ascq, editor’s note) which is going to happen, so obviously I want to end the adventure at TGB in the best way. If I can leave the TGB with the title of French champion, of course I will take it.

I’m going to attack this match wanting to win it because I know that afterwards we will have a return match (Monday April 22, at 8:50 p.m.) at the Prado which risks being even more complicated. There, I want to have the best possible match at home to make the task easier on Monday in Bourges.

I hope that we will get through this quarter-final and then there is a chance that we will fall against Basket Landes… our best friends (laughing).

2024-04-18 08:28:18
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