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(E) Zadar 2006 - Daniel Kraljevic's Story
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  02/12/2006 | Sports | Unrated
(E) Zadar 2006 - Daniel Kraljevic's Story




By: Tonci Prusac / Croatian Herald / 03.02.2006

MELBOURNE - Melbourne's Daniel Kraljevic will be keen to prove that Andrew Bogut isn't the only Australian Croat who can play basketball, when he takes to the court to represent the Australian Croatian community at the inaugural Croatian World Games 'Zadar 2006' (15-21 July) later this year. The friendly giant, who lives in the outer south-western suburb of Altona, has signed up with several friends to play basketball in the inaugural games, aimed at uniting Croats from all over the world through the ambitious week-long festival.

We caught up with Daniel earlier in the week to discover exactly what he plans to achieve in this exciting sporting/cultural event.

- CROATIAN HERALD (CH): How did you first get into basketball?

- DANIEL KRALJEVIC (DK): I used to play soccer up until 2003 when I was 19. Then I finally decided that I was too tall to play soccer so I changed over to basketball. A teacher from my old high school is involved with the Altona Gators, who compete in the BigV Division 1. He told me to start training with them.

At first I thought training at an elite level was going to be beyond me but hard work and determination has helped me get better and I am looking forward to the future.

- CH: How did you find out about Zadar 2006?

- DK: Last year I kept hearing from a lot of people that there was going to be an Olympics style competition held in Zadar. I found the website while searching the internet and decided to apply from there.

- CH: Do you know anyone else from Melbourne that will be going?

- DK: I have managed to convince my friend Joe Pajic to come along and participate. We are both going to Croatia in July so I thought he might as well play in the games as well. I have heard on the Melbourne Croatia (youth) forum there might be some other people from Melbourne that will be going. The more people the better the experience will be.

- CH: What are you hoping to achieve at the games in the sporting sense?

- DK: I am hoping to have fun and play well. It is a chance to see how I compare to other players from around the world. It is a dream of mine to be good enough to play overseas and I see this as a great opportunity to show others what I can do.

- CH: What are you most looking forward to at Zadar 2006?

-         DK: Being able to meet other Croatians from around the world and to spend a week with them is going to be an experience I will never forget. I haven't been back to Croatia since 1998 so I am looking forward to this holiday. I can't imagine a better experience that playing basketball for a week and spending the rest of my holiday visiting the islands on our beloved coast.

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