Australia’s greatest ever basketball export has hinted at a return to the court for the Albury-Wodonga Lady Bandits.
Lauren Jackson ruled out making a comeback this year, but the door is still open for her to join the SEABL in 2019 – provided the timing is right.
The three-time WNBA MVP said she has spoken to the club and been impressed with the direction the Lady Bandits have taken under head coach Jim Wilson.
“We’ve talked about it, but at the moment that commitment is probably in the way,” Jackson said.
“When I retired, having my own time, my own routine was really important to me, and is especially important with (newborn son) Harry now as well.
“Molly (Rice) has been trying to get me out there this year, but I’d really only be able to do one night of training.
“Maybe in the future, when life is a little bit more settled and I’ve got something more permanent here in Albury.”
Molly (Rice) has been trying to get me out there this year, but I’d really only be able to do one night of training. Maybe in the future, when life is a little bit more settled and I’ve got something more permanent here in Albury.Lauren Jackson
Jackson has long held a soft spot for the Bandits, with her mother Maree playing for the team in the 1980s and her father Gary also maintaining a long association with the club.
Ahead of her time as both a dominant post player and deadly outside shooter, Jackson had praise for the revitalised Lady Bandits and has been very excited to see a raft of young local players proving themselves at SEABL level.
“Having someone like a Molly Rice at the club is so important, she’s played a lot of WNBL, got a great head on her shoulders,” she said.
“Having her here as a leader will only help bring players to the club, then all of a sudden good things start happening.
“(President) Steve Wright is doing a fantastic job, there are a lot of passionate fans, including myself.”
The Lady Bandits face a difficult road trip this week, tackling Nunawading and Bendigo on Saturday night and Sunday in a tough back-to-back.
Both the Spectres and Braves are yet to drop a game thus far and will take some stopping.
Lady Bandits’ star Emilee Harmon has started the season in impressive fashion with 73 points from the first three games, whilst also averaging 9.3 rebounds.
Nunawading and Bendigo will also take on the Bandits in the men’s competition and both are undefeated.
The Lady Bandits’ games tip-off at 5.30pm and 12pm, respectively, while the Bandits play at 7.30pm on Saturday and back up at 2pm on Sunday.