Blog de Sportiw

Relive the meeting between Anae Leleu, winner of the adidas Breaking Barriers x Sportiw contest, and LDLC ASVEL Féminin.

A few weeks ago, the Sportiw team had the opportunity to go to Lyon for a unique experience: bringing together the grand prize winner of the adidas Breaking Barriers x Sportiw giveaway and the professional players of LDLC ASVEL Féminin. 

Thanks to the collaboration between adidas Breaking Barriers and LDLC ASVEL Féminin, giveaway winner Anae was able to participate in a memorable inside-experience during a matchday weekend for the ASVEL women’s team.

We’d like to give a special thanks to adidas France, Clementine Painter, and Corentin Bell for making this event happen. Additionally, we’d like to give a shout out to the entire team who worked tirelessly behind the scenes, including Eva von Bönninghausen, Lea Vatthauer, Aino Linnamaa, Carolin Lanfer, Yoann Convert, Briana Ait Slimane, the LDLC ASVEL Féminin, Marie-Sophie Obama, Paoline Salagnac, Marie Bassery and 17 Sport team members Nathalie Petzold, Louise Amsili, and Georgie Young.

Recap of the adidas Breaking Barriers Contest

The adidas Breaking Barriers x Sportiw contest was first launched last year to promote the inclusion and empowerment of women in sports.

From an entry pool of over 1000 participants, 5 lucky winners received a complete set of adidas gear. It was Anae Leleu, however, who hit the jackpot: a full, immersive experience with professional basketball players.

About adidas Breaking Barriers

The adidas Breaking Barriers Project is committed to breaking down the obstacles faced by women and girls across Europe. By working together with experts in the field of gender equity and sports, nonprofit sports organizations from across Europe, local leaders, and coaches, the adidas Breaking Barriers Project provides the sports industry with the necessary tools to lead change.

With the adidas Breaking Barriers Academy, you can gain access to interactive activities, theoretical frameworks, and exclusive insights from professional athletes and coaches so that they too can join the ambition to make sport equal for all women and girls.

Anae Leleu, gagnante du concours adidas Breaking Barriers x Sportiw

Who is Anae Leleu?

My name is Anae, I am 21 years old, and I am originally from Rouen. I started playing basketball at the age of 4 at the Césaire Ération club, where I stayed until I was 13. Then, I joined the Pôle Espoir de Haute-Normandie for 2 years, during which I played in the U15 elite league. After this training, I moved to Cotentin to train at La Glacerie Cherbourg’s training center. Over four years, I played in the U18 elite league, NF3, and trained with the NF1 team. After those four years, I went to Clermont-Ferrand to play in NF2. However, I returned to Cotentin to also play in NF2 and train with the NF1 team.

Of course, basketball doesn't sum up my entire life. I am also a third-year student majoring in economics and management, and I will be joining EM Normandie Business School in September 2024!”

Training and Video Analysis

The weekend began in the heart of Lyon. We headed to the Mado Bonnet gymnasium, the sports hall that hosts the regular season of the LDLC ASVEL women’s basketball team and will host pre-game training camps for the 2024 Paris Olympics. Located 10 minutes from Lyon’s historic center, this gymnasium pays tribute to Madeleine Supt-Bonnet, nicknamed Mado Bonnet. Selected 27 times for the French national team, Madeleine began her career in Alès before joining AS Montferrand in the 1950s and ending her career at FC Lyon.

Upon our arrival on the Mado Bonnet, Anae met Alexia Chery, the captain of ASVEL Féminin, and reunited with her former coach from La Glacerie, Yoann Cabioc’h. Yoann, currently an assistant coach at LDLC ASVEL Féminin, is set to become the team’s head coach next season. He has also been a video assistant for the WNBA’s Chicago Sky since 2021. 

For an hour, Anae observed the team’s pre-match training, closely watching their physical and tactical preparation. She was then invited to join a video analysis session to better understand the strategies and stakes of the day.

Who is Alexia Chery ?

Coming from a family of basketball players, 25-year-old French center Alexia Chery joined the Lyon team during the 2021-2022 season. Captain of the LDLC ASVEL women’s basketball team and vice-captain of the French team, she was voted the best young player of LFB in 2017 and 2018. Additionally, Alexia was named the best young player of the EuroLeague Women in 2019 and the best player of the Women’s Basketball League in 2021. With Bourges – and notably alongside Marine Johannes – she won the French championship title in 2018, three French Cups in 2017, 2018, and 2019, and won the EuroCup in April 2023 with LDLC ASVEL Féminin.

Meet & Greet with the Players

After the video analysis, Anae had the opportunity to speak with Alexia Chery and Helena Ciak, two of the team’s most emblematic players. 

This moment allowed for enriching discussions about the role of women in sports and the importance of sharing experiences, highlighting the mission of the adidas Breaking Barriers Project around women’s sports in Europe. 

We were lucky to capture this exchange and it will soon be available on our social media platforms. :stay tuned: 🔥

Who is Helena Ciak ?

Helena Ciak is a French basketball player born in Dunkirk, in the Nord of France. The daughter of Piotr – a 2.18-meter-tall Polish international – Helena discovered basketball in Loiret at the age of 11. She began her professional career in 2010 with La Roche-Vendée in the Women’s Basketball League (LFB). She then played for Perpignan and won the Ligue 2 Final Four, where she was designated MVP. In 2012, Helena joined the LFB with Lattes-Montpellier, where she discovered the EuroLeague and was coached by Valéry Demory. She also played for Bourges Basket before moving to Dynamo Kursk in Russia, where she won the EuroLeague in 2017. Returning to Lattes-Montpellier, she was named LFB MVP in 2019. 

Helena has also represented France on the national team, winning the silver medal in 3×3 at the World Cup in 2013 and the silver at EuroBasket in 2015 and 2017. Her versatility on the court makes her a key player for the French team.

Behind-the-Scenes Match Preparation

Between the morning activities, Anae also got to experience some of Lyon’s charm.
Two hours before the start of the match, she was able to view the game from the inside. A presentation by Yoann Cabioc’h about the scouting and video analysis tools used within the team gave fascinating insights to the optimization of individual and collective performances.

Subsequently, Sylvain Laupie took over to present the performance support work he conducted with the players of LDLC ASVEL Féminin. He introduced us to the management tools he implements to regulate individual and collective commitments within a single project. This includes identifying each player’s way of operating, their behaviors under stress, and their ways of interacting within the group.

These two interventions gave Anae an overview of everything that goes into match preparation and how, in real time, coaches are led to make decisions.

Start of the Match and Live Analysis

Soon, it was time for 40 minutes of an intense match – with a bonus of live analysis from Sylvian Laupie throughout the game.

A rejuvenated LDLC Asvel women’s team took to the court with three new players to fill the gaps left by Julie Allemand, Marine Fauthoux, and Juste Jocyte. Newcomers Shyla Heal, Alice Kunek, and Chelsea Mitchell made their debut in the Lyon jersey. 

The Lyonnaises had a strong start to the match, before falling behind due to a lack of coordination against the aggressiveness of the Breton players fighting for staying in the league – despite the strong performances of Laura Quevedo (13 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists) and new recruit Chelsea Williams (10 points, 5 rebounds). 

At the end of the match, Anae participated in a technical debriefing before heading to the VIP area for the privilege of hearing impactful words from club president Marie Sophie Obama, as well as captain Alexia Chery and the new international recruits: Chelsea Williams and Shyla Heal. These inspiring exchanges marked the end of an unforgettable weekend.

About LDLC ASVEL Féminin

Founded in 1946, LDLC ASVEL Féminin is a cornerstone of French women’s basketball. Under the leadership of Marcel Bonnet in the 1970s, they won seven French Championship titles and played their first European Cup in 1974. After a marked growth in the 1990s with Sernin Marichal, the club was renamed Lyon Basket Féminin in 2002, winning the French Championship in 2004. Since 2016, with Tony Parker and Marie-Sophie Obama at its helm, the club won another French Championship title in 2019 and qualified for the EuroLeague Women. Thanks to a partnership with LDLC in 2019/2020, it took on the name LDLC ASVEL Féminin. Despite the health crisis, the team dominated the championship and qualified for the EuroLeague Women quarter-finals and the Coupe de France final.

LDLC ASVEL Féminin is the first high-level sports club to adopt the status of a mission-driven company. By incorporating its commitments into its statutes, the club aims to strengthen its societal commitment and establish a Mission Club model. The main ambition is to revolutionize professional sports standards by becoming a reference in citizen engagement, with a particular focus on women’s empowerment. Thus, the club’s societal objectives are now aligned with its sporting ambitions.


With lifelong memories made, Anae and the whole team took the road back, enriched by this unique experience and determined to continue supporting and promoting women’s sports.

The past weekend spent in immersion with the players of ASVEL Women’s Basketball was an incredible and enriching experience. I was captivated by their passion, determination, commitment, as well as their principles and human qualities both on and off the court. It was a real privilege to observe their daily lives so closely. Being able to discuss women’s sports in general with some of the players was a rewarding experience. I thank the Sportiw team and adidas Breaking Barriers for giving me this opportunity.” – Anae Leleu

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