“My earliest memories are playing playball in prep. I was more interested in the shoes than the game.”
They say fashion plays a large role in a sport. For Camberwell Dragons’ Matthew Power, he has a lot to owe his interest in basketball kicks as he looks to make his debut with the Victorian Under-20 Men’s team.
Having played domestic basketball during primary and secondary school, Power joined the Camberwell Dragons at the age of 13, barely scraping into their fifth team.
At 16, he was selected for the Dragons’ Big V Youth League team and his days in the Big V begun.
“I learnt a lot as a tall skinny kid playing against the bigger, older players,” Power said.
“I’ve been with Camberwell Dragons for eight years and keep coming back every season because I love the culture of the club,
“I honestly can’t imagine playing anywhere else and now, playing in the Under-21 team and Camberwell’s Youth League side, I’ve become a tall competitor who is up-for-anything.”
Power, who currently studies design at university in his pursuits to become an architect one day, is set to become a lot busier in 2021 after being selected to represent Victoria’s Under-20 Men.
While he could be designing basketball courts one day, Power said his dream to play for Victoria on the main stage has been a long time coming.
“Making the Victorian Under-20 team would have to be at the top of my basketball achievements as it’s been a goal of mine since Under-16’s,
“It’s incredible to be selected and it has showed me how much I, with all the help of the club, have been able to develop my game. Being able to train and play with the best players in the state is something quite special.”
In addition to playing, Power has grown to become a coaching favourite in the eyes of Camberwell basketball juniors as the coach of their Under-14 girls.
In Power’s opinion, playing in a team is one thing, leading one is another.
“My first time coaching my own team – now that’s a memory that sticks with me,” Power said.
“We lost (just), but it was when I first realised that I could probably enjoy coaching almost as much as I enjoy playing.
“I started coaching because it seemed like the logical way to give back to the club, however now I coach because I enjoy it. It feels great to help younger kids implement skills and plays that better them as basketballers.”
Power likens his coaching style to that of his basketball dad.
“My dad is, without a doubt, my biggest supporter that keeps me going,
“He was a professional basketballer and has been my coach for most of my basketball career since primary school. We’re good mates and I have been lucky to have his help and encouragement.”
As Power looks ahead for the Big V 2021 season in Youth League One Men, he remains optimistic about what the season may bring.
Currently undefeated, his positive intuition may just be correct.
“We’ve had a terrific start to the season,” Power said. “All the teams we play are skilled and athletic, so hard work and accountability will be key to playing our best brand of basketball,
“The boys are really great, and we all get around each other both on the bench and off it, so I can’t really expose any of them. They’re all just absolute legends.”
When asked about his future in basketball, Power is keeping an open mind.
“My immediate goal is to continue to learn and improve, and if that opens future opportunities for me… well wouldn’t that be great.”
THE BIG V FAST FIVE
Matthew Power had to answer these five questions as fast as he could. How did he go?
Go to post match snack? Grapes
Current song on repeat? Instant Crush – Daft Punk
Best dad joke? Two men walked into a bar… the third one ducked
Netflix choice? The Office
Finish the sentence – nothing is better than…. spending time with the dog