Nova Scotia

Olympic dream on hold after injury sidelines North Preston's Daneesha Provo

North Preston's Daneesha Provo hoped to play basketball for Canada at this summer's Olympics in Tokyo, but an Achilles tendon injury will keep her out. She is now looking forward to another chance in 2024.

Provo has been part of the national team program since 2015

Daneesha Provo played college basketball at the University of Utah. (Steve C. Wilson/University of Utah)

Earlier this month, North Preston basketball player Daneesha Provo went in for a lay-up at the training camp for Canada's senior women's team in Florida.

But the guard felt something pop as she took her first step. It was her Achilles tendon.

After hitting the floor, she knew it was the end of her Olympic dream for this year.

"I knew it right then and there," the 25-year-old Provo said this week. "Hearing that pop and knowing immediately what it was and what I would have done, it was devastating."

She is no stranger to serious injury.

Having recovered from an anterior cruciate ligament injury in the 2018-19 season at the University of Utah, Provo was immediately overcome with emotion to know she was injured again.

"I just started crying," she said. "Not because of the pain but crying because my dreams and all that hard work, that I worked so hard to get to, is over," she said.

Provo had the injury assessed in Florida and made the decision to come back to Nova Scotia for surgery.

Recovery will take months. But she said her family and strong support system in her home town are what's been keeping her going. 

North Preston basketball star Daneesha Provo recovering from Achilles tendon surgery

4 months ago
Provo's dreams of representing Canada on the senior women's national basketball team at the Olympics were dashed following an injury. She's now recovering in Dartmouth from Achilles tendon surgery and her future looks bright. 1:45

A year of accomplishments 

Playing in Germany was part of Provo's goals to get to the Olympics.

She played professionally in Freiburg, averaging 20 points per game in the 2020-21 season.

She said her teammates pushed her to be a better player.

"I didn't want to let them down. And my coaches there, they were amazing, " she said.

She was part of a young team and took on a leadership role.

The injury is a setback, but she isn't finished with basketball. She will focus on the next Olympic opportunity in 2024.

"I know that everything happens for a reason and I'll be back."

She was one of 20 players invited to try out for the Olympic team. The national team was going to train in Edmonton but eventually chose Tampa due to pandemic regulations.

Shay Colley, Provo's cousin originally from East Preston, was selected to Canada's roster.