Australian Masters Games

A slam dunk performance from Rob Mills on Games day two

4 October 2015

A slam dunk performance from Rob Mills on Games day two

After working the crowd into a frenzy at last night’s opening ceremony, 15th Australian Masters Games ambassador Rob Mills downed the microphone and went with the basketball as his weapon of choice for day two of Australia’s largest multi-sport festival.

Just one of more than 10,000 participants, Mills joined the Western Hustle 30+ basketball team for their opening match in Adelaide, and after blowing the cobwebs out in the warm up, the 33-year-old star was ready to go.

There were clear nerves before tip-off – both from the Hustle and their opponents, the Longnecks, and questions loomed as to just what Mills would bring. None were answered immediately though, as the stage performer started the game on the bench.

It was an obvious tactical ploy from the Western Hustle, keeping their star recruit away from the fray until the pace settled, and it was an inspired one at that as Mills hit the court with immediate impact.

He was frenetic on offence and defence, and no sooner had he stepped into the game was he awarded a pair of free-throws after drawing a foul. Mills went one from two and the Western Hustle headed into half-time up by that solitary point.

Having proved his worth, Mills was rewarded with a spot in the starting five for the second half and again showed he was more than capable, going aerial to pull down a number of rebounds with little concern for his own welfare.

Successfully dodging the many stray limbs underneath the basket, the Hustle coaching staff gave their number one man a breather knowing full well he would be pivotal in the dying minutes. The men from Western Australia went blow for blow with the Longnecks from this point on, but answered every challenge.

With a margin of just two points and only a matter of minutes remaining, it was time for the Hail Mary play. Mills leapt from the bench when called upon and glided up and down the court with the benefit of his rest. Demonstrating vision that could only come from a career weaving around microphone leads and expensive musical equipment, Mills wooed the crowd with his passing prowess as the Western Hustle skipped away.

The game clock counted down, and a turnover led to a fast breakaway. His team willed the ball into his hands and Mills hit the basket like poetry in motion for a highlight reel layup that iced the game – although it was all a blur for the man of the moment.

“All I know is that the game was in the balance at one stage, and then Mills got a fast break, and Mills nailed an epic lay-up which really turned the game,” the Victorian laughed

“They’re calling me the game changer. They carried me off the court.”

36-year-old Western Hustle captain Ray D’Costa said he and his team were thrilled to have Mills on board.

“I tell you what, we have the name Hustle in this team, and it wasn’t until Millsy came on that we really got the hustle going,” said D’Costa.

“I really think injecting him at the time we did was absolutely crucial to our victory today.”

“I’d love to have Millsy back any time at all, especially if he’s happy to have me up on stage,” announced D’Costa.

Whilst we may not see the Mills and D’Costa duo touring nationally any time soon, chances are high Rob Mills will be back in action at the Australian Masters Games in the future.

“It’s a great celebration of people, I think. The Australian Masters Games in general is played with such an amazing spirit and it’s been awesome to be a part of it,” Mills said.

“I will definitely be back one year, but probably not basketball because that was like doing the beep test over and over again. But I’m not bad at lawn bowls, so that could be me.”

Highlights and points of interest for Monday 5 October:

  • Lyn Peake – 65 years old, athletics

1:40pm @ SA Athletics Stadium, 145 Railway Terrace, Mile End

Since fracturing her shoulder three years ago in three places, this 10-time Australian record breaking athlete is now number one in the world for sprint races in her age group.

  • Brett Rankine – 41 years old, hockey

9:45am @ State Hockey Centre, Main North Road, Gepps Cross

After his team won gold at the 2013 Australian Masters Games and another at the Pan Pacific Masters Games, the Magpies are back to defend their title competing against the Young Warriors.

  • The Kool Kat Club

7pm @ Airbnb Games Village, Adelaide Convention Centre, North Terrace

The kings of Australian Swing encourage you to come and jump, jive and wail the night away.

  • Wolf Blass Master Class

7pm @ Airbnb Games Village, Adelaide Convention Centre, North Terrace

The 15th Australian Masters Games are underway in Adelaide, October 3-10, featuring more than 10,000 participants from across Australia and around the world.

The Australian Masters Games is proudly sponsored by the South Australian Tourism Commission through Events South Australia.

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