Young athletes in Gippsland will be one step closer to becoming the next basketball superstars, with a new high-performance basketball training hub to be established in Traralgon under a re-elected Andrews Labor Government.

The Traralgon hub will be one of seven around the state, giving local kids access to the best training programs close to home, with a clear pathway to playing elite level basketball in Australia or the American NBA.

Operating out of each of the hubs, a new intensive training program will see a dedicated High-Performance Coach work with male and female teams for kids under 14, 15, 16 and 18.

Teams for players with disabilities will also be established, helping to discover our next great Paralympic stars.

Each team will train together every week, plus individual one-on-one weekly sessions to work on shooting and strength conditioning.

As part of the program, local kids will also have the opportunity to compete in interstate and overseas tournaments, allowing them to advance their skills and increase their exposure to national and international talent scouts.

A re-elected Labor Government will invest $5 million to establish the new training hubs, as part of a $101 million plan to grow basketball from grassroots to elite level across the state.

This includes establishing a new Australian Basketball Centre of Excellence at the Knox Regional Sports Park – which Traralgon’s new high-performance basketball training hub will feed into – with Basketball Australia relocating their training facilities from Canberra.

Existing basketball facilities at Knox will also be expanded to provide headquarters and training facilities for the new ninth National Basketball League (NBL) team, which will be a Melbourne team.

This will cement Victoria’s position as Australia’s home of basketball, with operations centred at Knox and supported by the high-performance basketball training hubs around the state, including Traralgon.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Sport John Eren

“Any parent with kids playing elite level sport can tell you, they spend hours in the car every week.”

“Only Labor will help local kids take their hoop dreams to the next level, with a new basketball training hub right here in Traralgon.”

Quote attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

“If local kids dream of becoming the next Jenna O’Hea – we’ll give them the pathway to get there.”

Quote attributable to Labor Candidate for Morwell Mark Richards

“This investment will mean the next generation of our basketball superstars don’t miss out on the chances they deserve.”