Update from the Dodgers (28 March)


Hello to all Dodgers players and families!
We hope you have been enjoying the Grading Rounds of the Winter 2021 season, and getting back into games and trainings.
Just a few newsy updates from us!
Uniform shop open
Our uniform shop will be open again this Tuesday (from 4.30pm) and Thursday (from 5.30pm) for those families who have yet to pick up their uniform orders (all orders up to 22 February, or order #4173). The shop will be open for about an hour each time, but please make sure you arrive close to the opening time to avoid disappointment. Please return borrowed jerseys when you come along to pick up your new jersey.
We thank all our Dodgers families for their patience as we have waited for our new uniform orders to arrive. Rest assured we are reviewing our current arrangement, with a view to how we can improve things. Huge thanks to our volunteer Uniforms Coordinator, Jo, for all her work in making it all happen, particularly against all odds!
We are thrilled to welcome Alex Toohey to the Dodgers!
Alex has joined the Dodgers Under 19 Junior Premier League (JPL) team which is coached by ex-Dodger junior Aaron Crowe. The team has got off to a great start to the season with a 59-52 win over the Tuggeranong Vikings and a 53-42 win over the Ginninderra Rats.
Alex is an outstanding Basketball ACT (BACT) junior representative who recently joined the NBA Global Academy Program at 
Basketball Australia's Centre of Excellence (CoE). 
In February, he represented the Australian Boomers in a FIBA Asia Cup Qualifier against New Zealand as part of a squad made up of current and ex CoE members.
Alex developed his skills through the successful basketball program at Marist College under the mentorship of Grant Barclay.
Alex is part of a skilful young Dodgers team which will be highly competitive in the JPL.
We encourage all Dodgers juniors and parents to come down and watch a Dodgers Under 19 JPL men's or women's game during the 2021 season.
These games are held on Sunday evenings - see the Rounds schedules here: https://bit.ly/30WCxpo (U19 Men) and https://bit.ly/3vFLrpy (U19 Women).
This will provide our younger players with an opportunity to see some entertaining and high-level junior basketball that they can aspire to.
Come and see one of the future bright lights of Australian basketball play as a 16-year-old!
If you have nothing on tonight, the Dodgers U19 JPL team is playing at Tuggeranong Stadium at 8.50pm (tonight) against Wests.
Congratulations to Ashley Cross - Basketball ACT Award for Outstanding Service!
At a recent AGM of Basketball ACT, it was confirmed that our President, Ash Cross, has been awarded a Basketball ACT Award for Outstanding Service in recognition of his 40+ years of service to basketball in Canberra!
Ash has been involved in ACT basketball since the 1970s, through various clubs and in the ACT Representative Program during his junior playing years. Ash has also been a significantly committed Dodgers President since 2017 and a highly dedicated Dodgers coach.
Ash began his basketball days at Melrose High with a bunch of mates in the mid 1970s. Having grown up predominantly as a cricketer and AFL player, Ash quickly found what would become a lifelong passion in basketball. Under the guidance of coach Don Patton, who would ultimately become a lifelong friend of Ash’s, the team had initial success, and was soon able to step up into the senior men’s reserve competition with several older players. From there, Ash quickly developed as a basketball player and was selected in the ACT representative team in his late teens.
This unofficial ’school’ team of Melrose students ultimately rose to first division skill level and later combined with the ’Southern Suburbs’ team to form ’Souths’ in 1978. Ashley was a key member of the early days of this club, and played Centre for what would ultimately become a dominant club over many seasons. Many of the younger Souths players, including Ash, were invited to train and/or play with the Canberra Cannons.
Ash continued to play basketball in the ACT region spanning a number of decades including for Souths, Weston Creek Woden Dodgers, and several teams in the Masters Competition.
After unofficially coaching all three of his children who followed in his footsteps to play junior representative basketball for the ACT, he decided to make it official. He had a strong desire to give back to the game, and after several years of experience as a committee member on the Marist Basketball Club, he returned to his old basketball club, WCW Dodgers in 2017. Although initially planning to just coach a team, Ash quickly found himself volunteering on the Club committee. He was soon after elected as Club President.
Since that time, Ash has given his all to the Club - both as President and as the coach of numerous Dodgers teams, ranging from the younger age groups right up to the more senior levels. He has been a regular face at many Dodgers events, including at many of our recent age group trials for the Winter 2021 season.
He has also been the much-needed leader that all clubs need to keep the annual processes of club trials, registrations, competitions and awards ticking over, skilfully bringing together the Dodgers committee to ensure everything that has to get done is done. He has often put in this huge effort and commitment at times when he has also had a lot of other commitments outside basketball on his plate.
The Dodgers’ recent trials have had a huge turnout of players across numerous age groups, which is testament to the popularity that the Dodgers have achieved as a Club under Ash’s leadership.
Whether you are a lower grade junior who is just starting out in basketball, or a higher grade player who is on the ACT rep program, Ash will give you the same focus and commitment - this inclusive philosophy is something that has been adopted widely throughout the Dodgers community, and is something for which the Dodgers have become known and respected.
In addition to his many Dodgers commitments, Ash has also been a devoted representative of our Club at various Basketball ACT committees and meetings, and through this has been strongly involved in the direction of basketball in the ACT.
Ash is fundamentally committed to sharing his knowledge, experience and passion for basketball with every player he coaches, or any Dodgers player in general.
His guiding motivation is to provide all players with a foundation in basketball so that anywhere they go in life, they will always have the basic skills and knowledge of the game such that they could pick up a ball, have a crack, and make some lifelong friends along the way. Just as he did.
A huge congratulations Ash, from all of us at the Dodgers, for this highly deserved recognition of all that you have done - and are still doing!
Our Vice President, Grant Keys - our new Men’s Premier League coach
We are delighted to announce that Grant Keys, our Vice President, is our new Men’s Premier League Coach!
Grant replaces respected longtime Dodgers coach, Dai Harrison, who has stepped back from Dodgers coaching to focus on his duties as head coach of the ACT Under 23 Mixed Netball team. We greatly appreciate the huge commitment that Dai has made to the Dodgers!
Grant has 30 years of playing experience at the highest national and state levels, with two years experience as Assistant Coach of the Canberra Gunners and Canberra Gunners Academy mens teams, winning the NSW State League title in 2019. In 2020, he coached a senior mens team in the BACT Summer Slam and is currently coaching junior Dodgers teams.
Dodgers advocacy for new basketball infrastructure!
Our Vice President, Grant Keys, made ABC News recently regarding the need for improved and expanded basketball facilities in Canberra!
Read the story here.
This year, the Dodgers has grown from 275 to 350 registered juniors playing in over 40 teams.
It is fantastic that we have so many junior ballers who have joined our great club, but with the growth in basketball across the whole of the Canberra community, it is critical we now get some new, expanded and improved infrastructure in the ACT!
Ours is a city with such a great tradition of basketball - with huge participation rates, and such an inclusive, diverse membership - so it is imperative we have the infrastructure our sport needs to support growth in basketball here.
It is encouraging that a proposal for new indoor courts in Woden made it onto the new ACT Parliamentary agreement, and we look forward to working with government to make it happen!
Extra Dodgers training opportunity - Saturday morning skills development sessions
One of our senior coaches, Anthony Hunia, is continuing to run his very popular Saturday morning skills development sessions in 2021. In Term 2, these will be 1.5 hour sessions at the Hedley Beare Centre gym (Old Stirling College, Fremantle Drive, Stirling), starting Saturday 24 April. Junior session (U10/U12) from 8.30am to 10am and Senior Session (U14 to Open) 10am to 11.30am. $100 for the term or $20 per session. Email Anthony at anthonyhunia@yahoo.co.nz.
Other training opportunities
We are pleased to provide information on the following additional external training opportunities for Dodgers families and players (please note that we simply provide information on these programs as a service).
  • Basketball ACT runs a variety of holiday-based programs and term-based programs - see www.basketballact.com.au (then Competitions and Juniors) for more information on the variety of programs available.
  • Sydney Basketball Institute provides a weekly 2 hour term-based training session of a Thursday late afternoon / evening (5.30pm to 7.30pm) at Canberra College gym (Launceston Street, Phillip). Starting Thursday 22 April 2021 and running until Thursday 10 June 2021. $300 for the term or $40 casual. Email sydneybasketallinstitute@gmail.com for details.
  • Scorers Academy offers a variety of holiday and term-based programs for JPL, Division 1 and Division 2 players - at the indoor basketball court at Brindabella Christian College in Lyneham - search for Scorers Academy on Facebook or email scorersacademy@hotmail.com
Basketball ACT community referee course (Level 0) - 18 April 2021
Basketball ACT will be conducting a Community Referee Course (Level 0) on Sunday 18 April 2021 at Belconnen Basketball Stadium for people looking to commence their referee journey. Further details about times, costs, requirements and registration can be found here.
Please follow us on Facebook…as this is where we communicate a lot of our messages with our players and families!
That’s enough info from us for now!
We hope everyone has a great Autumn holiday, and look forward to seeing our Dodgers players back on the court in Term 2.
Best wishes from your Dodgers Committee!


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