Invercargill’s Tom Cowie is set to play an increased role in the Southland Sharks’ push for a fourth National Basketball League title in 2022.
The 21 year old guard enters his fifth Sal’s NBL season this year on the back of a 2021 season which saw him record career highs in total points, rebounds and assists having featured in all 19 of the Sharks games last season.
“I’m ready to go. It was a shame the season got pushed back a bit (a three week delay due to omicron) but it gives us a couple more weeks to train and get prepared,” Cowie said.
“I got a great opportunity to play last year and I’m hoping and expecting to build on that again and get more opportunity to contribute to the team this season,” he said.
Cowie’s Head Coach agrees. Rob Beveridge touches down in Invercargill on Monday and is looking forward to working alongside Cowie again.
“Last season Tom played as an “understudy” to Courtney Belger and as the season went on, he gained more confidence and was given more opportunities to play. I have an expectation that Tom will continue to develop as a point guard and play more court time and play a bigger part in the rotations. I am excited about having another local player contribute to the success of our club,” Beveridge said.
Cowie said he can’t wait for next week’s arrival of the coach which will ramp up the team’s pre-season preparations.
“It’s been great with Zo (Burton), Liam (McRae) and Dom (Kelman-Poto) already down here and we’ve already got the chemistry going with them so we can keep building from where we left off last year. Bevo (Beveridge) turning up next week will add another level to the training and preparation for the first game against Wellington,” Cowie said.
The New Zealand Under-16 and Under-17 age group representative has had a busy off-season, getting himself in the best possible position to take another step forward in his promising career.
“I’ve just been doing a lot of workouts on my own, working on my skills and fitness, working out in the gym and getting myself as good as I can before the season starts. We’ve been scrimmaging with the boys and getting a couple of runs in a couple of times of week,” he said.
“I think we’ve got a team that’s good enough to win it all. It will take a lot of work but I don’t have any doubt we have put together a team that can do it,” Cowie said.
The Sharks campaign commences at home in ILT Stadium Southland on Friday 29 April against traditional rival and defending champion the Wellington Saints. Ticket details will be confirmed early April, pending announcements from the Government on maximum crowd numbers in indoor venues.