Six years ago, a group of Orange Tigers footy players decided to enter the Orange District Basketball Association summer comp as a way of staying fit in the off-season.
After winning premierships in C, B and A-reserve grade, the unit now known as the O-Town Royals decided to take the plunge and move up to A division for the 2019-20 season.
Fast forward to May 2020 and that same squad of curious footy players from six years ago are the top flight champions.
The association made the decision to award premierships to all sides leading the competition at the time of the COVID-19 onset and even though Dale Hunter knows his team's capable of winning big-time matches, the team feels pretty fortunate to be in the position it's in.
"We're very lucky," Hunter said.
"We backed ourselves every time we went out there but we're under no illusions... Trojans would be bitterly disappointed to lose their streak like this.
"We watched the Trojans play for many years and admired the way they went about it. We only beat them once throughout the season but you never know how it would have panned out the finals series."
We watched the Trojans play for many years and admired the way they went about it.Dale Hunter
Hunter's men didn't play a pretty style of basketball but whatever they did in 2019-20 led to their premiere ladder position at the time of the season shut down.
"We played a strong, physical brand of basketball. We didn't' have many high-scoring games," he said.
"We concentrated on the defensive side of things a bit harder and ended up in front a lot of the time."
The team's first name was the North Orange Tigers but after rustling the feathers of a few opposition teams, they though a name change would help them keep a low profile.
"We thought a change of alias might slip us under the radar," Hunter laughed.
"We're still not very popular with other teams but that's what you get when you put a bunch of footballers on a basketball court."
Hunter plays the point guard position which is responsible for handling the ball from the back of the court but when asked about his shooting ability, he backed himself as more of a dime dropper than scorer.
"I don't shoot much... we've got other guys on the team who can do that. I pass it to them."
Orange District Basketball Association president Gerard Power says the sport at Orange is no closer to confirming a return date given the stringent government rules regarding indoor sports.
"There's no possibility in the near future for us for us to get back into the centre," he said.
"PCYC has completely shut down too and if it is to re-open, it could be a logistical nightmare for them due to the multiple codes that share that stadium frequently.
"At this point in time there's not much we can do other than set things up for when full contact competition returns and then move forward from that point."
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