Young star on course for career on court

Zoe KeenanGeraldton Guardian

He hasn’t even finished high school, but after being offered a scholarship at Basketball Australia’s Centre of Excellence, Geraldton’s Alex Ducas has his future mapped out.

The 16-year-old has spent the past five months in the NBA Global Academy in Canberra and has the chance to take his basketball to the next stage next year.

Alex got a phone call in June that had him packing up his life in Geraldton, saying goodbye to his family and transferring schools within three days to begin at the academy.

Joining an international squad, he trained five days a week and attended weights sessions four days a week.

“It was interesting seeing the different styles of basketball from around the world and learning how they play,” he said.

While in the academy he impressed many, including Basketball Australia’s Centre of Excellence head coach Adam Caporn, earning himself the yearlong scholarship.

“The coaches said they liked that I had played SBL for the Geraldton Buccaneers,” Alex said.

“Playing against men at my age helps you toughen up so they liked that about my game.” Having played with the Buccs for two years, Alex said he was nervous at the start, but gained more confidence towards the end of the season. He said the centre would give him more opportunities to play at State level and more exposure to college basketball teams in America.

After a short break he’ll go straight into training at the beginning of next year to prepare for a tournament in Germany.

Looking further into the future, the guard player hopes to take his career to America to play college basketball, but has plenty of back-up plans.

“If college isn’t the go, I’d love to play in the NBL and start earning money at a younger age playing in Australia,” he said.

Alex said Europe was always on the cards, but if all else failed, he would go into AFL. “My parents won’t let me play football right now though,” he laughed.

Father Aaron Ducas said Alex started basketball at age six, following in the footsteps of his two older sisters. “He’s always been the one that’s asked us to give him a hand taking him to trainings, taking him to the gym, he’s the one that’s driven where he wants to go,” he said.

“Any parent would be proud of what he’s done, what he’s achieved.”

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