Basketball Otago Tour Media Release

Basketball Otago is pleased to announce a tour to Melbourne, Australia for our extended OceanaGold Nuggets squad. The tour is designed to test local Otago players in a very tough playing environment.

The tour will allow Head Coach Mr. Alf Arlidge to assess the players under conditions similar to those the OceanaGold Nuggets will face on away trips in the 2010 National Basketball League.

Basketball Otago has been planning the tour for some months as an opportunity for the top local players to receive quality competition, which has not been available to them in New Zealand during

2009. The return of the Nuggets to the NZNBL means the tour will now have added benefit as a part of the preparation for 2010.

The tour commenced on the 8th of December and finishes on the 15th of December. The team will play a mixture of sides from Melbourne, which includes the Victorian Under 20 Men’s representative side, teams from the Melbourne Tigers organisation and teams from clubs, which operate in the SEABL (the Australian 2nd Division).

The Schedule for the Tour is as follows:

December 8th Travel to Melbourne
December 9th Game versus Frankton Blues side
December 10th Game versus Diamond Valley side
December 11th Rest day
December 12th Games versus Frankston Blues side and Victorian U20 Men’s representative side.
December 13th Games versus Melbourne Tigers side
December 14th Game versus Kilsyth Cobras side
December 15th Return to Dunedin.

When asked about the tour, Arlidge said, “This is an excellent opportunity to assess how players perform in pressured and highly intense competitive environments. The team has a healthy mix of experienced senior players and young exuberant talent.

The trip will be a great stepping stone for the next season and will be an integral part of developing the team culture that I believe will be important for the squad.”

The Squad for the Tour is as follows: Andrew Parke, Chris Hepburn, Hayden Miller, James Ross, Jordan Small, Luke Aston, Matt Trueman, Mitch McRae, Riki Buckrell, Sam To’omata, Steve Robinson, and Tom Rowe. Results will be published on the Basketball Otago website