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So say millions of boys and girls, who have played the game of Mini-Basketball.
'You can play by yourself or with a small group of friends.'
'The running, changing direction, stopping, pivoting, passing & catching, dribbling, shooting and defending helps keep me fit as well as improves my game.'
'I like it because my friends like it and we go to Mini-Basketball together.'
'I practice a lot to improve my skills so I can use them in the games.'
'To my surprise the girls are as good as the boys.'
'It's true, Mini-Basketball is fun.'
I play mini-basketball for a club called the Southland Mini-Sonics. The club meets on Saturday mornings at the Southland Sports Centre. The club has about 40 boys and girls who are divided into two groups. The younger children practice on a different space while we play on the mini-basketball court. I moved up to the under 11 section last year. I enjoyed my time in the younger group. We used a size 3 mini-basketball and practised our shooting into a Little Tike Goal. We played a lot of fun games often with all the children having a ball each. I improved my mini-basketball by playing lots of these fun games.
Our coaches were Julie & Simon. Julie told us that she went to the secondary school and was a qualified Sports Leader. Simon plays basketball for Southland in the men's team and is a qualified coach.
In the older section we play with a size 5 mini-basketball but still play lots of games which improve our dribbling, passing, rebounding, shooting & defending. We also play games where we learn to play as a team. We think more about our tactics such as where we should be on the court and how to help each other in attack & defence. As you can see from my picture I like to dribble so my team mates like to give me the ball to move up the court. I like to pass the ball just at the right time to give my friends a good chance to score a basket.
We have two different coaches for the under 11's. Jade plays for the women's team and Matt who is Ellie's dad. We have watched Jade play when there is an exciting adult game on Saturday afternoon. Jade is very good at scoring long shots. Sometimes Matt has to work on a Saturday so Jim another player from the club helps out.
I wear the number 6 vest and usually play in the second and fourth quarter of a mini-basketball game. We play matches against 3 other teams in our town usually about once a month. All the teams meet together at one place. We played on our court this month. We started the morning with all the teams practising some skills together. The teams are all about the same. Sometimes we win games and sometimes we lose. Everybody is always very friendly and my mum comes along to help with the refreshments.
We also play mini-basketball at school on the playground, sometimes in lessons as well as after school on a Wednesday. I help to referee because I know all the rules. Our teacher lets us wear our hat outside to protect us from the sun. I only wear my sunglasses when I practise shooting in front of our garage at home. I try to practise my dribbling and shooting most days and my friend Ollie often comes over and we make up our own shooting competitions. We have played some games with other schools at a Mini-Basketball Festival. I enjoy these special afternoons because we all go to the Sports Centre on a Friday and mix up with the other schools to play. I feel really happy because I think my skills are quite good.
My ambition is to play basketball for the Southland Sports College. I would also like to play for the Southland Sonics on a Saturday afternoon with a crowd watching me play.
I play with Jack for the Southland Mini-Sonics. My dad helps coach the team. He used to play football but now he says he prefers mini-basketball. We sometimes give Jack a lift on a Saturday morning and his mum comes along for the Inter Club Rallies. Jordan, my best friend also plays for the team. She was named after a very famous American basketball player.
I'm older than Jack and will be going to Southland Sports College in September. I'm looking forward to playing basketball for the school and also hope I can play for the town team in the Youth Games. I know how to referee and keep score in the scorebook. I sometimes do these jobs rather than play in the mini-basketball rallies, to give everybody a chance to play.
Ellie says that I'm a very good passer of the ball. I often practise passing with Jordan after school. We play at the park where there is a basketball goal. It is really too high for us to shoot properly but it is still good fun to dribble, pass and shoot when we are close to the basket. Sometimes Jack and Ollie come to the park as well and we play a game.
This year the Mini-Sonics were invited to send two players to a Mini-Basketball Jamboree held in France. I was lucky to be chosen with James who happens to be in my class at school. We met up with 8 other boys and girls from different parts of England. We travelled together to a town in France and met boys and girls from 5 other countries. We spent the week playing mini-basketball, not in national teams but all mixed up. Our team was called the 'Squirrels'. We also played other sports and visited the forest where we enjoyed an adventure trail. We were sad to leave but had made lots of new friends. I'm still writing to Julienne, my special friend from France. I'm managing to write some sentences in French with my mum's help.
I hope you enjoyed reading about our Mini-Basketball. If you would like to tell us about yourself and where you play why not send us an email to: email@example.com