The GHMBA Ballarat Miners have been able to secure Craig Moller as a short term replacement for the injured Chris Smith until already signed James Hunter arrives in Ballarat following his current season in Spain.
Interestingly, Moller who stands at 203cm was drafted to Freemantle in the AFL during the 2013 rookie draft and after three seasons where he was only able to break into the strong Freemantle side once Moller was delisted. He returned to basketball where he had previously represented NSW Metro at the Australian Junior Championships and re-found his love of the game.
At the beginning of 2016 Moller began his professional basketball career training with the Sydney Kings in the National Basketball League (NBL) and although he was unable to secure the initial spot to replace injured Julian Khazzouh he was kept on by the Kings as a full time training partner.
Towards the end of the NBL season Moller was elevated to the playing roster for the injured Jermie Hill and made his debut in the final minutes of the last game of the season.
At the conclusion on the NBL season Moller signed with Sutherland in the NSW Waratah league and before signing with the Ballarat Miners was ranked in the top five of the league with an average of 19 points per game and eight rebounds.
GMHBA Ballarat Miners Head Coach Eric Hayes is pleased to be able to secure a replacement player “With Chris going down hurt, we really struggled last week against Sandringham, it puts pressure on rotations and game style.”
Moller comes to the Ballarat Miners seeking the opportunity to play at the highest level currently available in Australia with the intentions of making it back into the NBL later in the year.
The NSW Waratah league is a state league in comparison to the SEABL which is played across six States and Territories.
Miners Elite Teams Chair Nick Grylewicz said “We have a great history of players coming to Ballarat and cementing spots in the NBL. In 2015 we had Everard Bartlett and Anthony Fisher head to the NBL. The year before that there was Ash Constable and Nathan Sobey.” Other names to have gone through Ballarat and back to the NBL include Lucas Walker, Tim Coenraad, Shaun Bruce, Kevin White and Daniel Joyce.
Although only on a short term contract Moller will be provided with extra training sessions with Basketball Ballarat’s Manager- Athlete and Coach Development Nathan Cooper-Brown as well as working in the gym with Head of Strength and Conditioning Dr. Scott Talpey.
It is expected the Moller will arrive in Melbourne tonight and fly out with the team to Tasmania on Saturday morning before facing North West Tasmania Thunder on Saturday night then returning to Ballarat with the team on Sunday morning.
For more information on the GMHBA Ballarat Miners or Ballarat Rush please contact Elite Teams Administrator Melissa Thomas via 5330 7604 or [email protected]