Dave Smoothy retired from an everyday involvement with basketball in 2018 after 60 years in the game; he played for the best part of 30 years, referreed for 50 years and enjoyed a variety of other roles as coach, official, administrator, tutor and mentor.
He was introduced to the game in the late 1950s at school ,continued at college and played in various local leagues; it was at Teacher Training College that he qualified as a referee and it was in this role that he had most success, officiating mainly at local league level, but interspersed with games involving BUSA, National schools and National League junior and wheelchair competitions. In addition he commissioned games within the National League, ran courses for local teachers and was Chair person of the EDBA for 15years.
Career highlights include officiating at two BUSA cup finals and at the National Millenium Youth games held in Southampton in 2000.
Less serious memories include being proposed to whilst refereeing at an international get together in Exeter, being persuaded to referee having turned up to spectate a top of the table league clash in an “Is there a doctor in the house?” moment, having to pause a game when panic set in as a fire alarm rang and a caretaker suddenly appeared on court shooing us all out through a fire exit and watching his son’s side win the top National Schools competition in extra time!
Dave still follows the local Basketball scene keenly; he hopes that the success EDBA had under his management will continue and that the sport will flourish; associations can only be successful however if more people show willingness to help – it’s a great, rewarding game – we all need to aid its growth however we can, especially at youth level.