Jean Forster was a pioneer for women’s basketball in Australia. One of the stars of the game throughout the 1960’s, Forster was the first player in Australia to regularly deploy a jump shot, which would cause all manner of terrors to opposing defences.
Her career began at the tender age of 15 in 1958 and shortly thereafter she was recruited to join the Melbourne Comets, which would be her basketball home for the rest of her playing days. Standing at just under 5”6’ (or 167 cm) Forster played at either power forward or centre and her left-handed shot made her a key element in Victoria’s domination of the Australian Championships between 1960-66. Forster’s best week may have been in 1963 when she was named the MVP of the tournament.
Forster was first selected to represent her country in 1962 and the following year joined the Opals on an arduous 14 match tour of South East Asian countries, of which the team lost only one. Her career highlight surely was being a Captain of the Opals squad who travelled to Czechoslovakia for the World Championships in 1967. Forster was named MVP of the lead-in tournament in Brno and with an average of 21.2 p.p.g. was the second leading scorer at the Championship.
Though she retired in 1970, Jean Forster left a substantial mark on the game in Australia which we honour by naming her as a Player into the Australian Basketball Hall of Fame.