Hawthorn Magic would like to thank every player (and every parent involved) who has tried out for the Hawthorn Junior Magic representative program this year. Reflecting the success and popularity of our program, it was a record year for player registrations, especially in the boys program.
In Under 14s in particular, we had 130 boys vying for 60 spots. Likewise, the Under 16s boys had unprecedented demand with 100 registrations for 40-50 places.
We also witnessed more than 100 players across both boys and girls programs seeking to transfer from other clubs to Magic.
We realise that the process of representative trials is nerve-wracking, and can be highly emotional for both players and parents.
It is compounded when the number of aspirants far outweighs the number of available positions.
The children are very keen and want to play rep-ball for obvious reasons – they love their sport and want to be the best they can at it.
And we take very seriously the need to balance demand with maintaining the quality and integrity of our program.
The management and coaching staff at Basketball Hawthorn have deliberated about the number of teams we will run in each age group.
As mentioned in our email last week, we are somewhat constrained by court availability for training and matches.
And we also want to ensure we have top-quality coaches available for all teams.
We really don’t like having to turn away existing Magic players from our program.
But the reality is that we are in the unenviable position of needing to cap the number of teams we field.
This means that a considerable number of players who have been playing representative basketball for Magic for several years won’t make a team this year – a situation we acknowledge is frustrating and disappointing for both players and parents.
While it will not be a consolation for players missing out this year, we are working with federal, state and local governments to try to expand the number of available courts in our region.
Addressing the lack of facilities remains one of the most important pillars in our strategic plan.
In the meantime, we are keen to ensure we continue to offer basketball opportunities for those who have missed out on selection this season.
Accordingly, we are today announcing the introduction of the Magic Academy which will offer intensive skills training for any interested players weekly on Sunday afternoons during Term 4, and Term 1 next year.
We invite any players in Under 12s and Under 14s who have missed out on selection to register for the Academy to maintain your involvement with Hawthorn Magic and to hone your skills in a safe, competitive and progressive environment.
General Manager, Basketball Hawthorn