With trials for the 2023 Junior Performance and Development Programs well underway, Basketball ACT is excited to say that the number of nominations for all age groups have been at RECORD levels with 750+ players looking to take the step up in their basketball journey.

When discussing this year’s trial numbers, Basketball ACT’s Head of High Performance and Coaching, Phil Brown said, “The record number of junior players trialing for the 2023 Development and Junior Performance Programs is fantastic and reflects the growth of basketball at the grassroots level and the desire for young players to pursue their basketball development to the higher levels of the sport.   Selection to an U12, U14 Development or U16, U18 or U20 Junior Performance Program is an achievement in itself,  as it is very competitive selection process with more players missing selection than being selected into a program due to the large athlete numbers trialing”.  

Daniel Weatherburn, Development & All-Abilities Manager, backed that up by saying, “This is an excellent sign for the future of Basketball in the ACT, and I can’t wait to see these young players flourish and become our Canberra Gunners & Nationals stars.”

Age & Program# of 2023 Trial Noms
U12B – Development Program83
U12G – Development Program82
U14B – Development Program170
U14G – Development Program93
U16B – Junior Performance Program124
U16G – Junior Performance Program44
U18B – Junior Performance Program87
U18G – Junior Performance Program30
U20M – Junior Performance Program25
U20W – Junior Performance Program15

Phil Brown went on to say, “Regardless of selection into the Junior Performance (U16, U18 and U20) or the Development Program (U12 and U14), players will receive quality coaching and have the opportunity to develop their foundation fundamentals, whilst being exposed to the concepts and principles of team basketball in a positive, challenging and rewarding environment.  BACT has invested significantly in developing quality training and competition programs at all age groups to build a strong pathway for talented basketball athletes”.

“The pathways Basketball ACT have invested in, support an athlete’s progression – from U12’s and U14’s in the Development Program getting the opportunity to represent Canberra in state based competitions, organised by BNSW, through to our U16’s, U18’s and U20’s representing the A.C.T at national championships as part of the Junior Performance Program – can be seen in the recent success stories our association has had in 2022 – including:

  • ACT U18 Men winning the Bronze Medal at the Australian Junior Championships in 2021;
  • the Canberra Gunners winning the inaugural NBL1 East Championship, with an all-local developed playing roster; and
  • the Nationals Academy winning the NSW Waratah Women’s League.

As well as the individual success many of our Junior players are now receiving, such as:

  • Toohey and Bowyn Beatty receiving scholarships at the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence;
  • Four Canberra players being selected into the U19 Australian Men’s Squad;
  • Zara Russell selected to the Australian U15 National Team”

Further information about how the Junior Performance Program and Development Program are building pathways for athletes, as well as the competition opportunities for each program, can be found in the Basketball ACT – Athletes Framework.