Hoop dreams

AS­SO­CI­A­TION HIRES COACH­ING FIRE­POWER

Fremantle Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

THE Cockburn Bas­ket­ball As­so­ci­a­tion is on a mis­sion to de­velop some of the best young play­ers in the State and they have hired just the man to help them do it.

State un­der-16 boys coach Ty­rone Th­waites has gone back to his grass­roots, tak­ing on the role of coach­ing and player path­ways leader at Cockburn’s Hamil­ton Hill base.

Th­waites said ath­lete and player de­vel­op­ment was a ful­fill­ing area to work in and he was ex­cited to be able to lead such a pro­gram at his home club.

“I’ve recog­nised that our ju­nior de­vel­op­ment pro­gram needs to take a new di­rec­tion, some more lead­er­ship and a bit of a shake-up,” he said.

“On our girls’ side, par­tic­i­pa­tion and re­ten­tion of ath­letes is so im­por­tant; it’s been an area we have been strug­gling in and has been a pri­or­ity since I’ve been in­volved.

“Also the over­all iden­tity of our ju­nior pro­gram has prob­a­bly not been at the level we would have liked for a few years now, so we’ve worked to de­velop our own coach­ing phi­los­o­phy and style of play that is uniquely Cockburn to give our ath­letes the best chance to reach their goals.”

Th­waites said he and his team were al­ready see­ing pos­i­tive signs from their pro­grams.

“We’ve got our un­der-12/un­der14 de­vel­op­ment pro­gram up and run­ning now and we have nearly 120 ath­letes in those two age groups alone, which sets a great foun­da­tion for our WABL pro­gram,” he said.

“We’re pretty close to fi­nal­is­ing an agree­ment with both Andy Ste­wart and the Zeal­ous bas­ket­ball pro­gram that al­lows our elite un­der-14, un­der-16 and un­der-18 ath­letes to thrive in an en­vi­ron­ment to­gether.”

When all was said and done, he said the big­gest goal was to get more chil­dren play­ing bas­ket­ball.

“Bas­ket­ball of­fers some­thing more than just skill de­vel­op­ment,” he said.

“It builds so­cial in­ter­ac­tion, dis­ci­pline, con­fi­dence.”

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Coach Jake Har­ris, Meaghan Var­ian, coaches Kieran O’'Con­nor and Ni­cole Roberts, Max Dim­mock, Chace Nuku, head coach Ty­rone Th­waites and Daniel Sgro.

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