Viegas posing for SUR after her arrival into Malaga Airport. / MIGUE FERNÁNDEZ

Elated basketball champ Carla Viegas returns to the Costa from the U-17 World Championship with high hopes

The 16-year-old from San Pedro tells SUR of her university scholarship offers in the United States and WNBA dreams

MARINA RIVAS

Carla Viegas touched down at Malaga Airport on Monday night to a rapturous welcome to her biggest fans, her parents.

The shy schoolgirl, who plays for CAB Estepona, has finished the World Championship as the best triple jumper, averaging 45.1%, the best percentage in a world championship since 2010.

Her Spanish U-17 women's basketball team gave everything to come second in the final against the United States (84-62), Viegas says.

- I imagine that now that only a few hours have passed since the final, that you're still on cloud nine?

Yes, yes, my God, I still can't believe everything we've been through.

- How did you find the final?

We went out without being afraid, to fight and to make it difficult for the USA. It wasn't possible in the end, but we fought for it.

- Just the fact that you got to the final is an achievement, isn't it? Did you expect it?

Yes, we're very happy. The truth is that we didn't expect it and even more so when we got to the last 16 against Mali, because it was so close. We were a bit worried there, but we won and then we won the semi-final against France and it was crazy. Oh my God!

- And in the final, when the final whistle blew and you won the silver medal, was it more a feeling of frustration or joy?

A bit of both, but we were motivated and very happy. Then we took a lot of photos, sang, then we got to the hotel, called our families and spent most of the night celebrating. It was the best experience I have ever had.

- This year has been unbeatable for you. Your personal best in the League, where you have also been the top three-point shooter in the category, and now this medal. How do you feel?

It has been crazy, I didn't expect even half of what I have experienced and what we have achieved.

And, in this World Championship you have achieved nothing less than the record for three-pointers in the championship...

Really? What are you saying? (laughs). How cool, I didn't know anything about it, I can't believe it!

MIGUE FERNÁNDEZ

- Did you feel nervous when you went out to play or was it the same feeling as a league game with CAB Estepona?

The truth is that I have not been nervous at any time. The only game I was a bit nervous was in the quarter finals against Australia, because the previous game against Mali we played well, but then you start the game and everything goes away. As soon as any teammate makes a basket and screams, the nerves are gone.

- Who would you like to dedicate this success to?

To my parents, my family in general and my friends, who support me and are the ones who forgive me for always wanting to meet up with me and never being able to because I'm training. And they come to see me at games and support me.

- Many will wonder about your future. Do you have clear plans? Will you stay in Estepona or will you go to study and train in the United States?

“I still have one year of high school left and I would like to stay here for another year.

- Have you already received scholarship offers?

Yes, I have been offered many already, but I haven't decided yet.

– I remember that in an interview we did with you a few years ago, you said that your dream was to go to a university in the United States and play in the WNBA, do you still think the same?

Yes, for any player it is a dream to play in the WNBA. I wish.