Victorian duo Joshua Bannan and Wil Tattersall have graduated from Basketball Australia’s Centre of Excellence (CoE).
The two Victorians join Hunter Clarke (ACT), Aly Khalifa (EGYPT-NBA Global Academy), Kelsey Rees (SA) and Lucas Schmidt (QLD) as graduates of the this year’s program, having completing their time at the CoE in Canberra and will now progress onto new career pathways in elite basketball.
At 19 years, Josh Bannan has been in the CoE program since July 2018, after playing with the Blackburn Vikings and Victoria Metropolitan through his junior development.
Upon graduating, Bannan expressed his gratitude for being part the program.
“I am incredibly grateful for all the opportunities this program has presented me with, and to all the people who have helped me grow as an individual in my time here,” Bannan said. “It has been a privilege to be a part of such a prestigious program, surrounded by great people.
Centre of Excellence Men’s Head Coach Adam Caporn has high regard for Bannan’s skill, determination and leadership qualities.
“Josh Bannan has been an elite leader in our program, because he has been striving for excellence across so many areas,” Caporn said. “Not only in basketball but of course in academics, leadership and his work ethic, which will leave a mark here for a long period of time.
“We know he’s going to have a great career in Montana and then afterwards in the professional world of basketball and know he will influence a lot of teammates and programs with his combination of competitiveness and intelligence.
“We’ll miss him and look forward to watching his progress.”
Bannan, along with fellow COE graduate Hunter Clarke, will relocate to America to play with the Montana Grizzlies at the University of Montana.
Wil Tattersall came into the AIS program in 2019 before beginning his final year of high school. Since being part of the program, he has also earnt the opportunity to play in in the NBL1 with the Centre of Excellence team.
Tattersall will move to the University of California Riverside to start his collegiate career with the Highlanders. There will be plenty of familiar faces over in the states for Tattersall, including former Basketball Victoria coach Mike Czepil.
“My time in Centre of Excellence has been incredible,” Tattersall said. “A time filled with extreme growth and development off and on the basketball court – I am forever grateful for everyone that’s played a role in the experience and can’t wait to use what I’ve learnt here in the next step of my basketball journey.”
NBA Global Academy Director Marty Clarke spoke highly of Tattersall’s growth during his time with the CoE program.
“Wil leaves the CoE as the epitome of the holistic development that the program has been renown for over four decades. Wil’s development as a player is easy to see,” Clarke said. “Not just the improvement of skills he came in with, but also the expansion into new ways to influence a game.
“Wil was able to maintain a great balance with the basketball demands and those in the classroom and was rewarded with an ATAR score in high 90s.
“Above all, his achievement in his growth as a person and a leader will place him in a great position in future life.
“The opportunities Wil has been given, and he has grasped, to be a positive role model and leader of his peers sees him leaving the program equipped to take on whatever challenges come his way.”
Basketball Australia and the CoE wanted to wish Bannan, Tattersall and the other graduates the best of luck in their futures and respective careers ahead.