Martin is the Man

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Front Page - By DENISE S CAHILL

DAMIAN Martin ad­mits that when in­jury keeps him off the court, it gets him down.

But the cap­tain who has led the Perth Wild­cats to two na­tional cham­pi­onships says he quickly puts life into per­spec­tive and re­alises it is sim­ply a set­back.

When the Western Sub­urbs Weekly sat down with Martin last week, he’d just had stitches re­moved from his lower gum fol­low­ing the last surgery he had to en­dure af­ter re­ceiv­ing a bro­ken jaw and los­ing teeth in a hor­rific clash on court last sea­son.

The 31-year-old will be crowned Mo­men­tum Most In­spir­ing Man of the Year at the Men in Black Ball next month.

It is a ti­tle that does not sit com­fort­ably for Martin, who ad­mits he can think of more de­serv­ing peo­ple. “But it’s re­ally nice and hum­bling,” he said. The Men in Black Ball raises money and aware­ness for men’s men­tal health.

“I think ev­ery­body has been through pe­ri­ods in their life where they’ve bat­tled de­pres­sion or anx­i­ety and there’s been a sit­u­a­tion where a friend of mine had sui­ci­dal thoughts… life gets put into per­spec­tive when a friend is think­ing like that,” Martin said.

“I just lent an ear and lis­tened and I’m in a for­tu­nate sit­u­a­tion where my friend is still alive but I know of peo­ple who have had friends com­mit sui­cide and they al­ways think ‘what more could I have done?’.”

Martin, who is ex­pect­ing his first child with wife Brit­tany in Septem­ber, said men­tal health did not dis­crim­i­nate.

“With men’s men­tal health, so­ci­ety has to re­alise it’s a prob­lem… we’re start­ing to catch up,” he said.

Martin is ex­pected to sign on with the Perth Wild­cats for the next three sea­sons this week and will vie for Olympic se­lec­tion in July.

He con­tin­ues to train in the off-sea­son in be­tween sup­port­ing or­gan­i­sa­tions in­clud­ing Camp Qual­ity, A Stitch in Time that raises money for Youth Fo­cus, Food­bank WA, Global Roam­ing Pil­bara Foun­da­tion sup­port­ing at-risk youth and the Ro­tary Club of Hillarys.

Pic­ture: Andrew Ritchie­mu­ni­ d454335

Damian Martin will be named the Most In­spir­ing Man of the Year at the Men in Black Ball.

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