Player Spotlight – Matthew Sweeney

We’re back once again with another spotlight, taking the half term break as an opportunity to ask an EABL player what makes them tick, how they got into basketball, their goals for this season and beyond, and much more.

This week, we caught up with Derby’s Matthew Sweeney.

Name: Matthew Sweeney

Position: Guard

Team: Derby College Trailblazers

Tell us a little about yourself:

I am 19 years old from Galway, Ireland, and I’ve played basketball for about eight or nine years.

Prior to Derby Trailblazers, I played for my home club Titans, plus numerous inter regional teams and international teams.

How and where did you first get into basketball?

I got into basketball by a family friend inviting me to play in an academy on the weekends, that taught me the fundamentals of basketball and it went from there.

Can you a remember a moment when you decided basketball was something you wanted to play more seriously? What happened?

The primary factor that sparked my interest in basketball and made me want to take it more seriously was when I won the west regional finals with my club team at a young age.

Also making the West regional team gave me motivation to keep playing.

What have been the biggest challenges of your basketball career so far? 

The biggest challenges for me has been making it to numerous finals and losing by a short margin. That is always a difficult one.

Who is the toughest player you’ve faced? What made them so difficult to play against?

The toughest player I have faced in my years of basketball is probably Irish guard CJ Fulton, who’s now moved to Lafayette University .

CJ is a point guard who can not only score but he can get others into good spaces for open shots as well.

What are your current goals for the season?

My current goals for this season is to make the playoffs for the EABL and hopefully get to the finals and be crowned champions.

Do you have any plans or goals for next season?

My main goal is to maintain playing a good standard of basketball and if I can progress from there then I most definitely will.

What are you currently working on to take your game to the next level?

I’m mainly working on my defence and off the dribble jump shots. They’re the two aspects that I’m currently working on.

What advice would you give someone who is just getting started in basketball?

My advice would be to work hard from the beginning as it will be very beneficial in the long run, plus it will benefit you in more aspects than just basketball.

Who is your favourite basketball player and why?

One of my favourite basketball players would have to be Chris Paul as we both play the same position and he is a great floor general, team leader and can score as well as set up his teammates.

Main image credit – Lauren Newham

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