Alex Bertus guards the ball for the Grafton Vikings as they took on Murwillumbah in the North Coast Shield pre-season tournament on Sunday, June 23, 2019.
Alex Bertus guards the ball for the Grafton Vikings as they took on Murwillumbah in the North Coast Shield pre-season tournament on Sunday, June 23, 2019.

TIP TOP: Basketball tournament heads to Grafton

NORTH Coast Shield heads to the brand new Grafton PCYC on Sunday for a big day of representative basketball action.

One of the only regional competitions still running across NSW this year, things haven’t been easy for North Coast Shield president Rebekah Wall, but the competition has still seen growth through adverse times.

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“We’ve had our struggles this year. There have been plenty of changes made to the format to fit in with COVID restrictions but we have been going really strong,” Wall said.

“At each stop we’ve had our own COVID plan on top of the venue’s plan as well. Usually the teams playing are co-mingled with up to four age groups and sexes playing but we’ve stuck to one per carnival.

“It’s been hard to organise but it’s been worth it and the kids are just glad to be able to play.

“We’ve even welcomed Bellinger Valley this year so it’s incredible we’re still growing.”

Wall said the North Coast Shield committee have put in plenty of hard work, but thanked the volunteers for their instrumental efforts.

“We’ve had so many helpers cleaning. We have to get all the players in and out while cleaning in between games,” she said.

“Lots of volunteers want to be involved in helping the carnivals going ahead, it’s amazing to see.”

While Wall was yet to see the new courts in Grafton, she said she had heard good things and looked forward to seeing it in action.

“I’m yet to see them but I’ll be there on Saturday night when the seniors play. We’ve had committee members down to talk with PCYC staff and they’ve been very impressed,” she said.

“Grafton basketball has had a tough time not being able to play while the courts were being done. They’ll be looking forward to sorting themselves out and looking forward to the future.”

Teams from Grafton, Yamba, Bellinger Valley, Lismore, Byron Bay and Murwillumbah will compete across an epic day of basketball.

Under-14 North Coast Shield games tip off at 8am running right through to 5pm on Sunday. Spectator numbers are still limited but The Daily Examiner will be on deck to capture the action at the new Grafton PCYC.



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