How exciting! Today is my basketball Grand-final! My team of six enthusiastic boys led by our coach, Jack, has worked extremely hard just to make the finals. My heart was pounding a hundred kilometres an hour as I walked into our home ground, Slater Reserve. As I hurried to our team bench, our opponents caught my attention. They seemed a lot taller and “meaner” looking.

Whistle blew. Five of us started on the court. Our opponent got hold of the ball first. They were unbelievably fast. They kept penetrating our defences and kept scoring goals. Excited parents were cheering so much that their faces were as red as beetroots. None of us could stop our opponent’s best player, Zac, from scoring. He was shooting from all directions and was getting them in! By half time, both teams were extremely exhausted and our opponents were ten goals ahead which presented us with an enormous, but achievable challenge.

Jack was awfully frustrated as we were not playing anywhere near our best. He told us to play as a team and that we could still win if we make our transitions much quicker so that penalty shots come our way. He also directed us to rebound and position ourselves better to receive and score goals.

Our team was all fired up. The second half started in our favour. We were as quick as lightning on the court. We were dribbling, passing, shooting and rebounding without any mistakes. We caught our oppositions by surprise. The scores were almost level. We were trailing only by one point. The crowd was growing wild with excitement, fuelling our confidence. At the same time, our opponents switched back to attention and started playing like what they did in the first half making it harder for us to score.

After much effort we managed to score a crucial goal with fifteen seconds left! Our opponent threw in the ball but I managed to steal it! Our team was bursting with happiness! More opponents were heading my way and I had to pass the ball to Bryce, our team-mate. Instead of hanging on to the ball, Bryce did the most unexpected thing. He tried to score from half court! He missed by miles!

One second left and our opponent had possession of the ball. Our hearts ached for the final whistle but when it finally came our opponent had already sent their ball in the air and was heading towards the ring. We felt like the end of world had come when the ball went through the ring! That marked the end of our Grand final dream.

My whole team was broken hearted. Everyone was holding back their tears. We almost succeeded until Sean, our best shooter, broke down. Jack commended us for not giving up and fought to the end, which was the most important thing. We departed with eager anticipation for the next season.