Batkovic Winter Cup – Annual Defence Round

February 25, 2023 | Townsville Fire news

As the only team sponsored by the Australian Army, the JCU Townsville Fire is once again thrilled to celebrate its Defence Round in Townsville’s final home game of the regular season. A basketball battle between the Army and Emergency services should be a cracking curtain raiser to the main game. General Manager Sam Pascoe has enjoyed watching the Batkovic Winter Cup become an exciting annual contest.

“As a Garrison city it’s something that we’re really proud of, it’s into its fourth year and it was created to honour two people that have done so much for our club. Obviously the Goat Suzy Batkovic and once Brigadier, now Major General of the Australian Army Scott Winter.”

Major General Winter is extremely proud to be held in such high regard by the three times WNBL champions.

“If I go back to my first year here, the JCU Fire won the championship and Suzy got up and accepted the trophy and she spoke about the enormous pride that she had wearing the Rising Sun on their uniform, and I thought yeah what a great relationship we’ve got there.”

He’s humbled his name highlights a concept created following the 2019 floods, which pays homage to the military and emergency services for their efforts during the city’s struggle.

“It’s a great showcase of the incredibly close relationship we have and you know we all banded together for the community.”

The two teams won’t be working as one when they hit the court though. Firefighter Damien Phillips insists some of his crew have been recruited to rescue their Police pals from getting burnt again.

“Yeah this is our first year so we’ll have a mix with the QPS, and we’re certainly going to go out there and try and get that win on the board and stop that losing run.”

The underdogs are quietly confident they can cause an upset.

“Yeah we had a little secret training session the other day. So we’re just running a few plays, a few of the guys haven’t played for a while so just trying to blow out some cob webs.”

Corporal Tommy Wieczorek will be doing everything he can to ensure his side’s perfect record remains intact.

“I’ve played in it a few times and I’m keen to keep the winning streak going.”

The favourites also have a few fresh faces.

“Yeah we’ve got some new players that have posted up here… we’ve been scouting!

Tip off is at 1.30, Main Game Tips off at 3:00pm

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