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Meet 16-Year-Old Nguyen Thi Diep, the Only Female at Hanoi's Basketball Tryout

As the Vietnam Basketball Association (VBA) professional male basketball league enters its new season, teams are hosting tryouts to look for young talent.

VBA 2018's second runner-up, Hanoi Buffaloes, recently organized their tryout on April 21 at Bach Khoa Sports Arena, with many young players turning out to get a chance to play for the capital's major basketball team. The participation of 16-year-old Nguyen Thi Diep, however, prompted great curiosity and interest, as Diep is a five-foot-tall young woman, Webthethao reports.

"The team's registration form didn't specify any gender so I just went for it. I thought there would be four to five girls like me here but it turns out that I'm the only one. I'm very embarrassed!" Diep said.

Diep started playing basketball two years ago and has been hooked on it ever since. She lives in Soc Son, which is approximately 40 kilometers from the center of Hanoi, and woke up at 5am that day to travel to the arena with her friends. Her enthusiasm convinced the team to let her join the tryout even though the Buffaloes is all-male.

Diep passed the tryout's six basic drills and was included in the top 40 players list. However, she met several challenges when it came to 3-on-3 and full-court matches.

"She was fearless, she came out here very coachable, she plays with a lot of energy [and] she was a good teammate. She's got a great basketball future. Certainly, she was a little bit undersized compared to other participants but she was great [and] wonderful to work with," Todd Purves, the team's head coach, told Sport 5.

[Photo via Sport5]

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