THE Player Spotlight shines bright today on another one of the Southside Flyers’ backcourt members, as Draft Central looks at Australian Opal and 3×3 superstar Bec Cole, with the 28-year-old preparing for another impressive campaign with the Flyers.
Following her impressive individual run during the 2018/19 WNBL season, where Cole concluded her season second in the votes tally for the MVP award and earned herself an All-WNBL First Team selection, the former Dandenong Ranger and Melbourne Boomer backed up her displays in WNBL20.
Clocking up 17.3 points per game, Cole solidified her scoring prominence by ranking third amongst point-getters. Furthermore, Cole facilitated and rebounded the ball superbly well in relation to other guards, averaging four assists and 3.6 boards in a well-rounded season to say the least. These numbers told Cole’s story in terms of her production and they would not go unnoticed, as she received another All-WNBL Team nomination – this time in the Second team.
Announced in the relatively early days of the Free Agency period, Cole publicly recommitted to Southside in early July. A key member of the Flyers’ inaugural squad since being rebranded, she is as keen as anyone to make an immediate impact on the shortened and more hectic WNBL21 fixture ahead.
“I loved my first season with the Flyers. It was not just about the on-court success, it was such a great team and group of teammates to be around. We enjoyed the season; it was hard work but also a lot of fun and I feel very fortunate to be part of the Flyers,” Cole said.
“Unfortunately, the on-court success didn’t carry through in the Grand Final series but, while disappointing, just adds to the desire in 20/21. Now it is about working hard and going one better this season.”
Southside head coach Cheryl Chambers expanded upon her observations of introverts and extroverts within her own side, and when asked which side of the observation Cole is on, it was a no-brainer.
“Bec definitely brings an extrovert personality with her and she’s got this pure desire to win,” Cole said. “It doesn’t matter what we’re doing, if it’s just a little competition of who can get to a cone quicker or whatever, she’s just a great competitor.”
Constantly adding more layers to Cole’s game, Chambers hopes to further grow her shooting guard’s game, especially given that the next couple of years will be key to the future of both Cole and the Australian Opals (which Coach Chambers is a part of).
“Her three-point shot is certainly headed in the right direction, but she’ll just do all the hard work needed,” Chambers said without a doubt. “She’s got her body in the best shape possible, she’s able to sustain pressure on defence for long periods of time and lock down players. So, it’s just about adding to her game, because she doesn’t have any weaknesses anymore,” Chambers finalised .
The tandem of Leilani Mitchell and Cole will be a backcourt duo that many defences will struggle to contain, but for Chambers it may be the key to emerging victorious on many occasions.