Sometimes things do not go to plan, but for Keilor Thunder that is a good thing.
The Thunder had a goal to be promoted to the top tier Big V basketball women’s championship by the end of the 2018 season, but incredibly fast development of their young squad this year has them asking the question about bringing forward that timeline.
Thunder coach Tom Bandilovski and his club have put in a request to league headquarters to be considered for promotion following this season’s stunning run to the women’s division 1 finals.
“Our plan was to get into championship in two years,” Bandilovski said.
“This is our first year into that, we did exceptionally well and our club will apply for championship this year.
“It’s going through the process and they’ll inform the club in October.”
Keilor has no doubt it would put a competitive team on the court if it was granted championship status.
The success of the Sunbury Jets, who made the leap from division 1 to the championship this season and took out the title, shows the transition can be done successfully.
The Thunder has locked away all required players and would bring in two imports if they were part of the championship division.
“If we’re accepted, it will be good because we’re strong, we have a lot of interest from other players from outside that want to join the team,” Bandilovski said.
“I’ve had a meeting with every player and everyone is staying and no one wants to leave, so we’re going to contract every player we had this year, which is good for the team.
“We’ll get in a new import. It was a weak spot this year. Whether we get two imports or one import depends on whether the Big V approves our application for the championship.
“If they don’t approve, we’ll get one.”
Meanwhile, Keilor came away with a number of trophies from the Big V Awards night at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night.
Bandilovski was named coach of the year in women’s division 1, while Liam Glascott was coach of the year in men’s division 1 after taking the Thunder to the title.
Justin Soleimani, who averaged 18 points, five rebounds and two assists per game in the Thunder youth league 1 men championship-winning season, took out the MVP in the division.
Soleimani was also named in the all-star five.
Amy Smith, a key part of the women’s division 1 team’s success this year, was the youth player of the year in the division and got the nod for an all-star five position.
Chuck Long was the defensive player of the year in men’s division 1.
Keilor expects its top men’s team to be promoted to the championship next season.