South West Academy of Sport (SWAS) scholarship holder Cory Richardson came away from the Under 18 Australian Junior Championships in Terrigal, NSW with more than very good performances in a team that achieved highly. Richardson impressed Australian Coach Guy Molloy with his efforts and was invited to train with the Australian 17 and under squad with team mate Tyler Hickert.
Richardson’s hard work to achieve his goal of making the Australian squad after last year narrowly missing out was rewarded and due to his many hours of working on his skills, many of those sessions at 6.00am in the morning whilst others where in bed.
At the Nationals, Richardson captained the WA State Country U18 team to sixth place in a performance that ranks as high as any Country team since the era of Mark Worthington in 2000 with the team finishing above WA Metro.
During the championships, Richardson averaged 14 points, 5 Assists and 4 rebounds against the best players in Australia showing that very few could stop him from scoring and have a very important influence on the games.
SWAS Development and State Country Under 18 Coach Steve Hawkins commented “Cory has come a long way over the last couple of years and has developed into a very exciting prospect for the future. His ability to understand the game and to perform all basic skills very well, due to his hard work in and out of regularly team training sessions, has produced a fine young player.”
Commenting from Victoria, Australian Coach Guy Molloy said "Cory has done a fantastic job to be selected to the Australian team for the inaugural 17 years and under FIBA World championship.”
“We only saw Cory quite late in the process, on the back of a terrific U18 Australian championship performance for WA Country. So it is full credit to him, his teammates, and his coaches that he was able to beat out a number of other guards who had been in the squad for longer. We think his shooting and defensive ability will really assist the Australian team just selected to play its best", he said.
SWAS Coach Hawkins made mention of the fantastic job that Cory’s coaches had done to assist to mould this young player and commented, “Recognition always goes to the players and Cory deserves all the accolades for his very hard work to achieve this fantastic achievement.”
“But I must also pay tribute to the development coaches of the south west who have over the past 10 years regularly had players in the Australian squads.” he said.
Players who made Australian squads include Mark & Trent Worthington, Ben Smith, Cameron Gliddon, Sam Sopolinski & Tyler Hickert.