It was a standing ovation and an emotional night for veteran Ghanaian basketball trainer Mathias Ocloo when he mounted the podium to receive an award for his dedication and valour at the recently concluded Ghana Basketball Awards.
For a man who has dedicated over 30-years of his life to the growth, development and promotion of the game in Ghana, it was not a surprise when players, officials and guests stood up when his name resonated in the studios of TV Africa.
Ocloo has been an outstanding example of a personality whose drive and quest for success has been unrelenting.
The 68-year-old has served the Ghana Basketball Association in different capacities.
He has served under four powerful chairmen including Colonel JA Dellor (rtd), Brigadier General Anyidoho, Peter Kpodugbe as well as current chairman David Addo-Ashong.
He has also worked as the Team Manager of the National Basketball team and coached the Women’s National team in the past.
The highly-respected administrator has the main brain behind the organization of the Greater Accra Basketball League and other tournaments as well as spearheading the annual Thome Cabalan Championship.
Mr. Ocloo worked as the head coach of the University of Ghana Basketball Team for eight years and currently the long-standing coach of St Mary’s Senior High School.
One of his many brain ideas also includes the introduction of the Inter City Games which involved Accra, Lome, Benin and Lagos.
Driven by passion, and love for the game, the experienced trainer has made stupendous contribution to basketball in the West African country.
He was therefore presented with the Life Time Achievement for the extraordinary efforts that he has made towards the steady growth of the game in Ghana.
He has created a long-standing positive impact on the game of basketball by displaying character, integrity and dignity, resulting in the growth, success and viability of the game mightily.
He has been involved with the sport in a capacity related to coaching and administration.
Many have paid glowing tribute and showed appreciation to the man whose legendary status will remain forever.
Coaches, players, referees and administrators have poured huge praises on the iconic basketball figure.
Mathias Ocloo indeed remains a shining example to the thousands of players and officials who are currently putting their shoulders to the wheel in ensuring the game continues to grow to the highest level.
His citation read:
For many years, you have demonstrated unrelenting dedication and valour to the growth and development of basketball in Ghana.
You have against all odds, being consistent in your conviction to support endeavours that seek to promote understanding of the game.
On this day we join hands with the many basketball players you have nurtured in saying a big thank you and congratulations.
You are indeed an inspiration and an example to many.
It is our pleasure and honour to present to you, this special award as our recognition of your efforts.