Dulbinskis joins hall of fame

AGRIS DULBINSKIS will be bowing out on a high from the domestic basketball scene.

The high-flying Island star, affectionately dubbed ‘Air Latvia’ by the Guernsey Basketball Association family, is the 25th and latest induction to their hall of fame for special achievement.

That recognition would normally be reserved for those who retire ­– but in Dulbinskis’ case, he is returning to Latvia next February after a fruitful nine years.

Agris Dulbinskis has been inducted into the Guernsey Basketball hall of fame. (Picture by Adrian Miller, 29634934)

His personality and impressive displays on court have caught plenty of eyes in that time, not least that of Guernsey and Le Mont Saint teammate Pete Beausire.

Beausire called him a key component of basketball’s ‘golden generation’ and someone who has ‘taken us to the next level’.

Dulbinskis has thrice pushed Guernsey to the Island Games play-offs and has won six inter-insulars in succession.

Domestically, after a couple seasons with Panthers from 2013, he has starred for both LMS and Mayside, maintaining lofty averages of between 27 and 36 points-per-game between 2018 and 2021.

Barry Robilliard’s well-maintained stat book puts him at 1,928 points in 86 games as of now.

‘Obviously it’s very special and I am honoured,’ Dulbinskis said of his award.

‘It has been long years, many things have been achieved, lots of memories, and it’s great to be recognised.

‘I am very patriotic about my island and have always done my best.’

This recognition came at the annual GBA Awards night, where he also lost out in a three-way battle for Division One MVP also involving Aaron Walden and Nico Robinson.

Ultimately, Skipton captain Walden earned that prized recognition for his instrumental offensive and defensive roles for the title-clinching side.

The equivalent Women’s Division honour went to Sammie Cox, a first-time winner who enjoyed a breakthrough season for champions Ravenscroft and was outscored only by the highly-established Gemma Batiste. Ravenscroft’s successful long-term coach, Tim Halden, won the President’s Pick award.

Women's MVP Sammie Cox. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 29634937)

Ben Colley and Hayley McInnes earned the respective ‘sixth player’ awards for being outstanding squad players.

Meanwhile, Jeff Stuart scooped up the Coaches Award for working tirelessly alongside Patrick Ogier in the youth set-up, being a stalwart of both Future Stars and the Development Division.

And Pete Beausire proved a very fitting winner of the Barry Robilliard Trophy for services to basketball.

He has 20 years now on the committee, but this has been a particularly testing campaign, including many hours of sorting accounts and rearranging fixtures due to the loss of Beau Sejour as a playing venue.

There was also two-fold recognition for the Guernsey Expats team.

The recently-formed Division Two team, composed primarily of Filipinos, took home the PJ Henry Trophy for sportsmanship and meritorious conduct in recognition of their refreshing contributions, while their Jorisen Kent Frago claimed Rookie of the Year.

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