THE Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) free agency period opened last week, and Adelaide Lightning made sure to lock away the services of one of the best young guns in the competition.
The 2022/23 season saw the emergence of Isobel Borlase as one of the most exciting players in Australian basketball. Suiting up for the Lightning, Borlase was one of the breakout stars of the WNBL, and was recognised at the league’s night of nights.
She won the Betty Watson Breakout Player of the Year and the WNBL’s Sixth Woman of the Year in her debut season, and is quickly becoming one of the strongest female players in the country.
The guard averaged 13.5 points per game, and was one of Adelaide’s most consistent performers over the course of the season. She showed a high ceiling scoring the ball, including a strong finish to the fixture, in which she scored 25 points on 10/12 shooting against the Southside Flyers.
At just 18 years of age, Borlase is only going to get even better in the years to come, so the Lightning were sure to keep her around.
She re-signed on a two-year deal, and looms as one of they key pieces for Adelaide in the future, with the local talent likely to move into a starting role next season.
Most of her scoring comes from inside the arc, but Borlase has shown a strong foundation for long-range shooting, having knocked down 16 three-pointers in 17 outings. If she can continue to develop her game in this sense, it will launch her into the conversation for league’s best scorer.
As a defender, Borlase has shown a knack for reading opposition plays, as highlighted by her 1.1 steals per game. Her pesky nature on the defensive end makes her a two-way threat and further showcases the potential she holds as a player.
She also seems set for a stint at international level, after being named in the Australian Opals’ extended squad for the upcoming packed schedule for the team, which includes the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the Asia cup and the 2024 Paris Olympics.
The Lightning are the early winners of the 2023 WNBL free agency period, having locked away one of the strongest prospects in the competition. Borlase is a key piece in the Lightning’s future aspirations of winning the title, and she should continue her development over the next two years of her contract.