Getting the Bundaberg Basketball Bulls and Bears back into the Queensland Basketball League (QBL) will be a slam dunk for the Bundaberg economy, a boost for junior basketballers, and give the community the chance to watch top level basketball again.
Bundaberg Basketball committee member Mick Catlin said by having the local teams back in the state competition it would raise the standard of the sport in Bundaberg, and give the juniors something to aspire to, something that hasn’t been in the region for the past three years.
The campaign to bring the QBL back to Bundaberg was launched on Friday evening at the Bundaberg Multiplex where local business leaders took the opportunity to hear what Bundaberg Basketball had to offer.
Mick said being at a state level would attract import players, both national and international, who would be involved in the community to promote the sport, get kids active and help the less fortunate while they were not playing basketball.
“Community wise it’s good to have one team for the community to get behind,” he said.
“We have our football teams and our codes and separate clubs, we don’t have one team we can all unify behind, whereas Bundaberg Basketball Bulls and Bears we have that one team we can all get behind.
“It will be even more important in the community as time goes on, because we plan to do a lot of work in the community regards to helping disability programs, Indigenous programs, and players will help with Meals on Wheels and many more organisations.
“We want the community to know who all are players are, and they will be out there in the community to help.”
Call for support from Bundaberg businesses
The evening’s program explained where the sport was headed and what it hoped to accomplish.
Mick said it was a vital time for business to jump on board now and show support for what could be game changer in Bundaberg sport.
“Business now have the chance to take part in the future of Bundaberg Basketball,” Mick said.
“We have this amazing venue at the Multiplex, we used to be able seat 250 people at the old stadium and now we will be able to have 1000 people here.
“Even though this venue is a lot bigger we will still have that great sporting atmosphere, and involve the juniors through the games and what else can I say – I am just really damn passionate about this and hope we can have it up and running by the new season!
“We are in need of $300,000 to make this happen and that seems like a large figure, but I believe the sport will contribute back to the community and the end result will far out weigh that.”
Mayor says Council supports basketball
Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey said it was an exciting night at the Multiplex and he was proud the Council had agreed to sponsor Bundaberg Basketball for three years and hoped others would get on board.
“The Council has committed just over $52,000 in cash and in-kind support with a three year plan to ease them into four games to all be held here at the Multiplex each year,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“I am encouraging businesses to get on board – Bundaberg needs a state league basketball team for both the men and women, and the youth of Bundaberg deserves a pathway to the elite level.
“Basketball has a huge cult following in Bundaberg and this is the small steps to get it all up and going.
“Basketball events always have something for everyone – from the youngest to the youngest at heart – it’s a great activity and you see the passion and commitment from the players and everyone involved at each game.”
Mick said he hoped the Bundaberg business community would see the benefit basketball would bring to the region and that they would jump on board by October to help finalise the plans.
To find out more on how you can help secure Bundaberg's future in the QBL email Mick Catlin: [email protected].
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