THIRTY years ago when Tony Lewis agreed to coach a All Saints' College basketball side as a way to get the school more heavily involved in the Bathurst local competition, his plan was for it to be a single-season stint.
That plan changed.
Three decades later Lewis is preparing for yet another season coaching basketball at what is now known as Scots All Saints College.
"Every year I go 'I'm not doing this anymore, I'm getting older and I'm getting crankier if that's even possible'," he laughed.
"But there is always a kid there, you think to yourself 'This is Freddy's last year, I'll coach because this is Freddy's last year and I've had him for ages.' Then the next year it's like Freddy's little brother is playing."
When Lewis arrived in Bathurst to manage the basketball stadium, he had already been coaching for some 20 years.
It was a sport had a huge passion for and it was his drive to see more kids discover their own love of basketball that saw him take up a coaching role at All Saints'.
"How it all started, All Saints' had some sides in the summer competition and I pushed pretty hard for them to play in the winter comp. They were short of coaches so they said if 'You want us to put teams in, you have to coach a team'. I thought alright," Lewis explained.
"Predominantly I coached the boys, I usually coach the firsts but I think last season I ended up coaching three teams. I coached the firsts boys and the natural progression there was to coach the seconds at the same time.
"Then I delved back and gone right back to my grassroots and started coaching the little kids too. That's been interesting for both of us as it's been a long time since I've coached little kids.
"I did some work with the Year 5/6s and the team I had this year were Year 6/7s who were a good bunch of kids and I'll probably coach again. They made the grand final and it's always nice when you have eight sets of parents come up individually and thank you for the work you've done with the kids.
"I'm a basketballer at heart, unashamedly basketball is my number one sport even though I'm universally recognised for my work with AFL and touch.
"I've coached everywhere from the CBA, which is the second tier down from the NBL, state teams. state league teams, junior rep teams and I've had success coaching women's sides as well."
Lewis has always worked hard to see the players he was in charge of develop. He has staged countless one-on-one sessions to make that happen.
"I'm a players coach, I coach for my players, if I have to cop a foul or whatever for the team I'll do so," he said.
"I call a spade a spade, always have, always will, but you take pride in seeing your players progress.
"My mantra, especially coaching at the school but probably overall in coaching, is that I've got a job to teach them how to play basketball and how to win, but to also make them better kids, better people."
One of the players Lewis has helped to develop is Luc Fenton.
Fenton has relished the chance to play under a coach with the methodology and experience of Lewis and knows he is not the only one.
"Honestly I prefer him as coach, he's hard on you when wants to be, but he is also a bit of a softie," Fenton said.
"He's very persistent. If he wants you to focus on one thing then he'll make you focus on it. If you stuff up he'll let you know, but I like working like that as well.
"It's especially been good for me, when I was first selected for the team I was real nervous, but my game has actually improved and excelled under him and because of that, I was actually able to play for the Bathurst Goldminers.
"I definitely wouldn't have been able to do that without his help. I definitely I would say he's improved all of our games, to have him is awesome."
As well as finding success on the court, one of the things that has lured Lewis back to the coaching job year after year has been the friendships he has formed.
"Over 30 years I've coached a heap of kids out there, I've made some friends out of some of them and you keep in pretty close contact with them," he said.
"Over the years there have been some staff members that have become friends of mine as well. So I've enjoyed the friendships.
"I've had some terrific kids coming through and now I have kids come up to me and saying 'You coached my Dad' - you get a bit of a buzz about that."
This coming season the Scots All Saints' basketball program will obviously depend on what the current COVID-19 health advice is.
But if given the green light Lewis wants to see his sides not only play in school competitions, but test themselves against older, more experienced rivals in Bathurst's local league.
"This is a bit of a new concept for us playing in the senior comp, we didn't get a lot of out of playing in the junior comp at the end, it wasn't strong enough for some of them," he said.
"It will be good for them."
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