Farewell Connor Matthews

I am sad to share the news that Connor Matthews will finish with the Eltham Wildcats Basketball Club on Friday 29th January 2021, having tendered his resignation as our Basketball Operations Manager, as he pursues study and a career in education. Whilst we’re disappointed to lose Connor from our staff, we’re pleased for the decision that he’s made, the direction he is taking and couldn’t be more appreciative of the impact he has had on the Eltham Wildcats.

Connor began with the club just over four years ago as a raw 21 year old, not too far graduated from high school; but within the club he was known as a coach with a high basketball IQ at both Junior Domestic and Championship levels, having only recently completed the player pathway through the club programs. Quickly, Connor had started to develop his administration skills, in particular through the work opportunities our annual tournament provides where he was mentored by senior staff. It was here where he was recognised as a switched on individual who handled the high pressure environment that the tournament brings. We backed in Connor for the Full Time position of ‘Basketball Operations Officer’ that had been vacated. Over the four years, the position has changed significantly allowing Connor to continue to grow and develop and to many, he is the face and name that ensures everything in our club ‘ticks.’

However working Full Time in the sport you grew up passionate about can be tough. If you love coaching and playing but you’re doing that all in the same place in which you’re employed, it can become a little all-consuming. For Connor that time was coming and whilst his heart and love for the Wildcats and basketball remains, the chance for separation and to head toward teaching was too good to give up.

One of Connor’s impacts through his time has been his management, guidance and education of the teenagers through our Administration Program. As a result, just as we identified Connor internally for the position four years ago, we’ve been able to do the same on this occasion, giving another Eltham Wildcat member a chance to start their working life in a Full Time position. We look forward to announcing this in the week ahead. The concept of providing ‘Pathways and Opportunities’ rings true not just for players, but across a broad range of streams. Connor’s dedication to this club is so strong, he gave us plenty of warning, allowing for a smooth transition to his replacement, including through the heat of the Eltham-Dandenong Junior Basketball Tournament.

We’re incredibly proud of the individual that Connor has become in his time of employment for us. Personally, I couldn’t be more proud and thankful for his efforts. Much of the reason that our Saturday Junior Domestic operates so smoothly every Saturday has been because of his time, effort and willingness to go above and beyond for the sake of the children playing the game. Whilst he officially finishes in the office, Connor Matthews impact on the Eltham Wildcats Basketball Club will last for some time.

As he finishes with the Club on Friday 29th January, on behalf of our General Committee and staff, we wish Connor the very best in his years ahead and thank him for this contribution to the Eltham Wildcats Basketball Club. We look forward to seeing him enjoying basketball in a relaxed state as he watches many of those he’s helped develop running our stadiums.

Greg Jeffers
Chief Executive Officer
Eltham Wildcats Basketball