Basketball: College star Caitlin Clark drafted No.1 by Indiana Fever for WNBA debut

Caitlin Clark was the queen of the collegiate game, but expects a major test, when she joins the Women's National Basketball Association, after going first in the WNBA Draft to the Indiana Fever.

The 1.83m (6ft) guard broke the all-time NCAA scoring record and sent television ratings skyrocketing during March Madness, with her splashy logo threes and astonishing passing ability, captivating fans in the United States.

"Reality is coming" for the 22-year-old sharpshooter, warned 10 time All-Star Diana Taurasi during a recent ESPN appearance, promising a tough reception in the highest ranks of the women's professional game.

Caitlin Clark is selected No.1 in the WNBA draft.
Caitlin Clark is selected No.1 in the WNBA draft. Photo credit: Getty Images

Clark says she is prepared for just that.

"The WNBA is so competitive right now," she said. "Every single time you step on the floor, it's going to be a rivalry."

A soldout crowd piled into the Brooklyn Academy of Music, leaving little doubt that Clark's star power could endure, as she makes the leap from college to the professional game.

Behind the fanfare, Clark says she will put in the work to earn her keep in the WNBA, where even first-round draft picks can find themselves on the chopping block in a matter of weeks.

"So many teams are loaded with so much talent and this is the most competitive league in the entire world," she said. "Less than 144 spots, so you better bring it every single night.

"I think that's exactly what I'm going to do."

The WNBA regular season begins May 14.