Indian Basketballer Asmat Kaur Taunque Makes It to Top U.S. High School

Mumbai, India, August 17, 2019 --( Captain of the Maharashtra U16 Girls Basketball team, Asmat Kaur Taunque, paves an exemplary pathway for high school aspirants in the U.S.A. Asmat, who played for India at the U16 FIBA ASIA Cup 2017, has been accepted by the very prestigious The Lawrenceville School, near Princeton University, in New Jersey, U.S.A.. Having maintained an impeccable academic record throughout her school years, along with training at the India Camp and the NBA Asia Basketball Without Borders Camp, the 6-foot Centre player has been offered this place after a series of Q&A rounds, essay submissions, standardized tests and formal interviews. This acceptance comes as a package of world-class education coupled with a rigorous basketball-training programme.

The Lawrenceville School is ranked no. 5 among the top private boarding schools of U.S.A. The school, with a stellar 200-year history, has an illustrious list of alumni. From Statesmen to Business tycoons, among the many noteworthy names are those of Nobel Laureate George Akerlof, former CEO of Walt Disney Michael Aisner, celebrated author Owen Johnson and famous Cager of the Chicago Bulls team- Joakim Noah. Asmat is super excited to wear her India Blazer to join the pavilion of such people driven by purpose. Asmat’s admission at T.L.S. will motivate many Indian students to actively work on their dream of higher education in U.S.A..

As she prepares to embark on this new adventure, Asmat shares the highlights of her journey that began at the age of 12.

In Asmat’s words, her journey so far has been a heady mix of a fairy tale and a high-action thriller. Trying to maintain a steady balance between sports and academic achievements, the past four years have been a period of undivided focus, preparation and fortitude. Asmat has been a consistent A-grade holder throughout her school years-which was not an easy task, considering that she needed to be away from school for long periods due to training camps and tournaments. Grade 10 was the toughest year, as she had to change school mid-session due to her father’s relocation to Mumbai. Before she could join her new school in Mumbai, she was called to attend the U19 India Camp in Bangalore. This allowed her barely 2 months of settling in her new school environment and preparing for her IGCSE Board exams in February. Despite the disturbances and upheaval, her Grade 10 result card had straight A's, telling a story of self-motivation and discipline.

In the Sports arena, having started at the age of thirteen, Asmat’s casual fling with basketball turned into a serious interest when the School Coach in Indore spotted her on the day of her admission to the school. She was invited to join the team after a preliminary tryout and there was no looking back thereafter. After playing inter-school, district and state level tournaments, she was soon selected to play for Madhya Pradesh in the U14 National tournament in Pondicherry. Her serious interest in the sport had, by now, flowered into a passionate engagement. It was only a few months later that she went on to play the U19 category as well as the Senior Open Tournament at the National level even before she had turned 15. Playing with and against women twice her age, further fuelled the fire within her to take her game to the next competitive level. Within a span of three years, Asmat has played in 9 National tournaments in various age categories, and bringing home a total of 8 gold, silver and bronze medals. Her proudest moment so far has been her buzzer beater shot in the Final match against Malaysia in the U16 FIBA ASIA Cup 2017 in which India emerged as the Pool winner.

In 2018, Asmat was awarded the prestigious MALWA award - a state level award given to young achievers in Sports. She was also a recipient of the ISPORA Award from the Olympic stars- the Phogat sisters - for her promising and exemplary foray into Basketball at a young age.

As she prepares to embark on a new adventure, Asmat’s acceptance at T.L.S. infuses in her an even greater desire to train among the best and return to play for her country, yet again, at an even higher platform. She dreams of seeing her country’s flag flying high at the Olympics and she fervently hopes to be in the contingent that brings home that honour.
Dharamjeet Taunque