Gators heading to Jamboree

By Tyler Maher

Rising stars of basketball will flock to Echuca this weekend as Basketball Victoria Country's annual Jamboree comes to town.

Among the 240 players invited to the under-12 event will again be a strong Shepparton Gators contingent, with eight regional talents heading across for the four-day training camp.

Sienna Carkeek, Alice Ludlow, Jamison Stovell, Adau Thon and Brianna Turner are among the girls invitees, while on the boys list is Liam Broom, Archer Hueston and Cooper O'Neill.

"It's pretty good (being selected)," Carkeek, 11, said.

"I've been playing basketball for two years now and I'm enjoying it.

"It's my first time going (to the Jamboree), I'm expecting a big crowd of people and a lot of basketball games."

Greater Shepparton Basketball Association general manager Mark Roffey has worked with the players in the lead-up to the Jamboree to help prepare them for the exciting opportunity.

"Mark has very kindly given up his time on a Monday night to get them ready for Jamboree," parent Stacey Broom said.

"They're having a couple of one-hour sessions to lead them into it, which is fantastic.

"They're all really excited."

Players will be split into 24 teams and will learn the skills necessary to climb the pathway ladder as their careers blossom.

"The Jamboree is one of our most exciting events on the calendar as we get to see the newest age group of Country stars enter the pathway," Basketball Victoria Country general manager David Huxtable said.

"Players and coaches alike emerge from the Jamboree with a plethora of new skills and make life-long friends throughout the state.

"It is an incredible opportunity that our best and brightest have earned through their elite work at the under-12 Skills Days.

"We encourage all the players to take on this great opportunity to learn from a variety of new coaches, take on board the lessons, players and strategies from our best coaches and most of all enjoy every moment of the Jamboree."

More than 1000 players took part in the selection process for the Jamboree through the Skills Days events.