THE 20th annual Hamilton Junior Basketball Association Bendigo Bank Tournament is ready to rumble this weekend, with over 600 of the state’s best young players preparing to ‘slam dunk’ their opposition.
It is a testament to the strength and support of junior basketball within the Hamilton community to be able to continuously host a tournament such as this for 20 years, showing that playing numbers, support and interest in the sport has never dwindled through the years.
Despite the fact that two other regions are hosting similar tournaments, the Hamilton tournament has attracted representative squads from Ararat, Portland, Warrnambool, Horsham, Bellarine, Camperdown, Terang, Millicent, Timboon and Maryborough to take on the best locals, something which has pleased HJBA representative Jill Robinson.
“Yes, it’s wonderful to have the support that we do from surrounding associations,” she said.
“We have some new associations coming this year like Camperdown, and it is great to see new faces.
“In the lead up to championships you need competitive games.”
There will be over 120 matches taking place today and tomorrow and this year features the return of the Under 18 Girls division, although unfortunately the boys division of the same age group is missing.
“Unfortunately there was a lack of entries in the Under 18 Boys, with the Bendigo tournament and Warrnambool Seaside Senior Carnival run on the same weekend and CBL is also running this weekend,” Robinson said.
The Hamilton Hurricanes will be hard at work in the Under 12s through to Under 18s in the girls’ competitions and while the Under 18 Boys may be missing, there are two divisions in both the Under 14s and Under 16s as well as an Under 12 competition taking place and Robinson expects all of the local teams to perform well.
Full story in the Spectator on Saturday, January 25, 2014