My time playing basketball in Australia has been rough. We are often booted from the courts to make room for indoor soccer or badminton. I loathe badminton. Basketball has simply been overshadowed by various other sports, sports such as netball. I find this strange coming for a country that has produced NBA starting center Andrew Bogut and ODU phenom Trian Iliadis.
Regardless of the lack of playing time, my proudest school related activity has been the Deakin Basketball Club. We have practices every Wednesday. Practice includes two hours of 5 vs. 5 vs. 5. I won’t even get in to explaining that complicated form of basketball. We have our games on Sunday. Unfortunately, our record on Sundays has not gone very well. Our team has played with only four players numerous times this season.
With all of the basketball hardships I have endured, I had one chance for revenge. My time for vengeance was the intra-club game: Australia vs. The World.
The World team was told to wear jerseys that represented their home country. I sported a fine white t-shirt with my nickname, Mr. Washington, and my number, 1776. Possibly the most patriotic jersey ever made. It would have been nice if I took a picture before the game because non-permanent marker simply does not hold up against 40 minutes of sweat. It does bleed through to make for a fine temporary tattoo.
If The World could pull out a victory, all problems would be forgotten. I would consider my Australian basketball career a success. With a strong first half and The World on top by 10, the “W” looked within reach. Yet after a debilitating second half, The World came up short. My spirits had been crushed. I briefly contemplated an early retirement from basketball. Australia had won.
However, all was forgiven at the post-game party. Australia and The World held hands, sang songs, and danced together once again. Plus there was a free bar tab.