Ahead of the 2015/16 NBL season, the Centre of Excellence (CoE) will play a practice match against the Adelaide 36ers on Friday night.
Seeking a scrimmage against an NBL team for the past couple of seasons, the CoE received their opportunity when a change to the NBL Blitz, the league’s pre-season tournament, made Adelaide available.
“Joey Wright (the 36ers head coach) called to ask if we would play them and we jumped at the chance,” said coach of the CoE, Adam Caporn.
Being flown down for the game, Caporn is excited at the opportunity to play against the highest level of basketball in the country.
“We’ll have to overcome some real challenges, it will be tough for us. But if we handle that the right way and use it as a chance to improve, there’s a lot of basketball benefits for us.”
Off the court, Caporn is also anticipating the team getting the chance to build relationships with the more experienced members of the 36ers.
“Adam Gibson will be there- a seasoned NBL and international veteran. I look forward to the boys getting to know him and getting some exposure to the guys who have been through (the CoE) and gone on afterwards. The Adelaide coaching staff will also be able to give us some feedback.”
Due to a couple of injuries, Caporn has been able to bring in three members from the South Australia National Performance Program in Biar Garang, Ky Matthews-Hampton and Brad Rathjen.
All still teenagers, those three athletes will get a taste of intense competition as well as getting the opportunity to connect with the CoE team.
Doors open at 5pm for the game with tip-off at 7pm. Tickets can be purchased here: http://bit.ly/1UIxufU
The Centre of Excellence team: Mate Colina, Andrew Ferguson, Harrison Froling, Biar Garang, Jayden Hodgson, Ky Matthews-Hampton, Brad Rathjen, Dejan Vasiljevic, Jack White, Thomas Wilson.