He’s only 16 years old, but Luke Jackson is facing one of the biggest decisions of his young life.
IT will not be long before Luke Jackson will have to make one of the biggest decisions of his young life.
Luke, of Canning Vale, was just six years old when he followed in his older brothers’ footsteps and first started playing basketball, chasing it up just a few years later with a move into football.
It was not long before it became evident to those around him that he was a natural at both sports.
Now 16, Luke has become one of the premier young sportsmen in the country in both of the sports he loves.
The East Fremantle Football Club player has been playing football for only four years, but that has not stopped him being touted as a potential top 10 AFL draft pick in 2019, having earned a spot in the prestigious AFL Academy next year.
He is also one of the best young basketballers in the country, earning selection in the Australian under-16s team to compete at the Asia Championships.
In just two years Luke will have to make the choice only a handful of Australian athletes have made before him: whether to follow his passion into football or basketball.
But for now, he said he was happy to continue working hard in both.
“I have always dreamt of playing sport professionally and now more than ever I am going to keep working hard to make my dream a reality,” he said.
“People are always asking me what sport I would prefer or would choose and I am lucky enough that both sports work with each other and are helping me to keep playing both for as long as I can.
“I would love to get drafted in the AFL one day or the chance to play in US college basketball, the NBL or to continue to represent Australia.
“I am really thankful for having a family who help me with everything and coaches that help me reach my full potential.”
Having seen Luke in action last year, under-16 WA Metro State coach Tyrone Thwaites said he was one of “the most athletically gifted athletes” he had ever worked with.
“He is the best rebounder his age in the country because his timing is perfect,” he said.
“He’s also incredibly humble, a trait that’s not lost on anyone who works with him.
“He’s got a big 12 months ahead. He’s well-placed to make the under-17 Australian world Championship team for 2018 after his under-16 Australian team involvement this year and he’s also a projected top 10 AFL draft pick, so he’s not short on options.”
Luke Jackson: ‘I would love to get drafted in the AFL’.