Gloucester Recreation Centre was the home to more than 70 aspiring basketball players on Sunday, June 25 for the Helloworld Gloucester Charity Sports Event.
The event featured Gloucester native and Perth Wildcats captain Damian Martin and vice captain of the side Greg Hire, who ran a clinic for junior players from Gloucester and across the region. All donations and proceeds from the event were given to the Airlie Homestead Day for Derek for the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.
Gloucester Basketball president Chris Reynolds said the success of the day was due to the players’ professionalism.
“I was absolutely impressed with how Damian ran everything there,’’ he said.
“All reports I heard from the day was that everyone enjoyed it, parents as well.
Damian will remain in town this week, running other basketball clinics with Gloucester High School and St Joseph’s Primary School.
He will then attend the Airlie Homestead Day for Derek event this Saturday, July 1.
“It was an amazing thing that he could actually make the effort to come back here,” Mr Reynolds said.
Mr Reynolds added that he had contacted Basketball NSW to potentially have NBL side the Sydney Kings hold a similar session in Gloucester in the future.
Ernie Abeysekera from Helloworld Gloucester, who initiated the event, said the day also acted as an investment to sport in Gloucester.
“The event was wonderful in the sense that 14 to 19-year-olds had an opportunity to a training session with one of the best basketball players we’ve ever seen in Australia.
“At the end of the day, it’s what we are seeing at the grassroots level in Gloucester that’s important to us.
“If we can find another Damian Martin or Greg Hire from Gloucester, that would be fantastic,” Mr Abeysekera said.
Former members of Gloucester Basketball also held a reunion in conjunction with the clinic.
A raffle was also held, with Hildegard Griffin from Craven winning a signed Australian Boomers jersey while Bec McIntosh from Gloucester won a $100 travel voucher.
The Airlie Homestead Day for Derek will be held in Rawdon Vale. Newcastle Knights star Nathan Ross and Member for Lyne Dr David Gillespie will be other special guests.