BVC Celebrating 50 Years

HALF a century on, the legacy of Basketball Victoria Country’s phenomenal growth and success was celebrated on Saturday night.

The All Seasons Bendigo Hotel played host to a spectacular array of BVC alumni, famous faces and country well-wishers for the 50th Anniversary Celebration Dinner.

The walls were lined with five decades of rich history – including rare medallions, memorabilia and newspaper clippings of our success throughout that time.

Living BVC legends Max Brisbane, Owen Hughan, Bev Bauer and countless other familiar faces were warmly welcomed and spoke fondly of their time supporting the cultivation of country basketball.


Mark and Leanne Dellavedova spoke passionately about Matthew’s love of his time spent with Victoria Country. Picture: BVC


Basketball Victoria president Mike Bainbridge and CEO Nick Honey attended the evening, with Bainbridge speaking fondly about country basketball’s continued success and the commitment BV has towards all parts of the state.

Basketball Australia CEO Anthony Moore and BA president Ned Coten attended the event and spoke richly of the benefits basketball can have throughout the regional community and just how spectacularly BVC had delivered the game to country Victoria.

BVC mainstays Bill Jeffs and Rod Bush spoke fondly of their time on the sidelines around the state supporting our growth.

Video congratulations were also presented at the BVC 50 Anniversary Dinner with Victorian Country superstar Matthew Dellavedova, Victorian Deputy Premier James Merlino MP and Victorian Minister for Sport John Eren MP expressing their congratulations to the organisation.

Representatives from successive Victoria Country 1980s-era boys teams also held their reunion at the event, with the likes of Peter Dean and Wayne Larkins reminiscing on their time spent in the Country kit.


Bev Bauer

Bev Bauer presented with a bouquet by BVC’s Sammy Cartwright. Picture: BVC


Basketball Victoria Country would like to thank all who have been involved in celebrating this unique milestone in regional Victorian sport.

The organisation has a rich history of success. In 2017, 106 affiliated associations spread across Country Victoria provide weekly competitions for approximately 52,000 domestic participants. This is only possible thanks to the extraordinary efforts of the many volunteers and association people over the last 50 years.

Tonight, we celebrate the past as we look to the future. “Great moments are born from great opportunity.” A meeting in 1966 has provided the opportunity that has been taken and developed into many great moments, by so many people.

Basketball Victoria Country would like to extend its thanks to the hard-working individuals who helped coordinate and plan the event.


BVC 50



Ashley Donaldson, Terry Davis, Shelley Lambert, Sharon Royal, VC Commission Chair Bill Jeffs, BVC Staff Trevor Newcombe and David Huxtable



Joanne Baxter, Sammy Cartwright, Jodie Harlow, Megan Moody, Craig Hockley, Rebekah Lacy, Jarrod Potter and Craig Freeman



Tony Long, Brett Rolfe, Kate Strahan, Rhonda Cleveland, Shelley Lambert and Bill Jeffs



Ashley Donaldson, Bev Bauer, Karla Coulson, Bob Osbourne



Molten, who have provided BVC with exceptional products that have enabled us to distribute over 6000 basketballs into children hands across Country Victoria.



Celebration of BVC History – Some of our most memorable moments:

During the year BVC will also celebrate our history at National Championships. See below our most recent instalments.

With so many great memories created, we would love to hear yours. We welcome you to email us your favourite BVC memory.



Under 16 and U18 Vic Country Women “Gold” Medal – National Championships

  • 1978 – U16W: Coach Noel Pollerd
  • 1985 – U16 W: Coach Murray Treseder
  • 1990 – U16 W: Coach Russell Thomas
  • 1994 – U18 W: Coach Murray Treseder
  • 1995 – U18 W: Coach Murray Treseder
  • 1996 – U18 W: Coach Jack Thomas
  • 1997 – U18W: Coach Jack Thomas
  • 2000 – U18W: Coach Jack Thomas



12th Anniversary of the 2005 Gold Medal winning Vic Country U16 Boys

In 2005 a young Jamie O’Loughlin had taken over as head coach for Victoria Country’s under-16 boys.

He had assembled one of the all-time teams for a tilt at the Basketball Australia National Championships. The roster was full to the brim and featured in its midst a future NBA champion and plenty of future talent steadily rise through the ranks. Add to that some wise counsel from assistant coaches Wayne Royal and Neil Burdon as well as team manager Ray Henry, the stage had been set.

After besting West Australia Metro in the semi-finals – it brought O’Loughlin’s men once step closer to the title. Facing their metro rivals – a title mainstay throughout the years at the national tournament – the odds were stacked against Vic Country… but that didn’t matter.

They found a way – the country way – of picking up the title….Read more

Team photo featured in the Herald Sun

Vic Country 2005 U16 Boys

Zachary Pickett Warrnambool

Lachlan Madder Ballarat

Mitchell Eddy Shepparton

Nathan Pigott Geelong

Matthew Dellavedova Maryborough

Liam McInerney Timboon

Damon Byrne Bendigo

Ryan Matthews Warragul

Jordan Jones Geelong

Eddie Prato Maryborough

Matt Dea Mildura

Trent Hando Geelong

Matthew Morrison Daylesford

Stephen O’Brien Warragul


Coach – Jamie O’Loughlin Geelong

Assistant Coach – Wayne Royal Bairnsdale

Assistant Coach – Neil Burdon Bendigo

Team Manager – Ray Henry Rutherglen



20th Anniversary in 2017 of the 1997 Gold Medal winning Vic Country U16 Women

Team members:

  • Lauren Bennett – Sale
  • Rebecca Bird – Horsham
  • Jodie Blafuhus – Kyneton
  • Cara Demaine – Bendigo
  • Amanda Jakiel – Ballarat
  • Mary Ann Kelly – Ballarat
  • Aneka Kerr – Shepparton
  • Deanne Smitherton – Wangaratta
  • Deanne Smith – Castlemaine
  • Belinda Snell – Mirboo North

Head Coach: Jack Thomas

Assistant Coach: Scott Sinclair

Assistant Coach: Jenni Watson