A young and talented Lae basketballer is giving back to the code that has helped him build character and a drive for success.
PNG representative Mika John Loko of Lae's Unitech Bulls has been mentoring younger, up-coming players.
He is preparing for the upcoming PNG Games if he is selected to play for Morobe.
“It’s going to be a big thing for me if I play for Team Morobe this year; I want to give back to the province,” he says.
Around six foot five and weighing over a hundred kilograms, Mika John Loko has become one of Lae’s powerhouses on the basketball courts.
A FIBA oceania representative and current small forward for the PNG men’s basketball side, Mika, if selected, will cause havoc for sides coming to Lae for the PNG Games.
Mika started playing around hoops in high school and throughout university.
He juggled basketball and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Lae’s University of Technology and it hasn’t been easy for the East New Britain – Gulf lad.
"Mika listens to advice, he asks for it and when he learns something new, he is willing to teach others," says Veronica Michael, Mika's reserve grade coach.
She has been one of the many people behind Mika during his development stages in the game.
For now, Mika has his mind set on playing quality basketball and although he has represented the country, he has never played for the Morobe, the province he grew up in.
This year, he might just get a chance to if representative duties by-pass him.
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