FROM little things, big things grow.
It is the outlook of Cairns Taipans guard Nathan Sobey after a cameo appearance in his NBL debut on Friday night.
The Warrnambool export was given just 11 seconds of court time against reigning champions Perth Wildcats following a 19-game wait to suit up for his new club.
Sobey, 24, grabbed a defensive board during his stint on court as the Taipans entrenched themselves in the top four and boosted their chances of a top-two finish with a 91-76 win against Warrnambool-bred Trevor Gleeson’s Wildcats.
Sobey, in for injured guard Corey Maynard, played one minutes, 41 seconds against Townsville Crocs on Sunday.
Cairns collected another win — its 15th from 21 games — to celebrate a record-breaking 4-0 Reptile Rumble season clean-sweep.
“It was good to finally get out there,” Sobey said.
“I didn’t know how long it would take to adjust to getting back into playing, since it had been a while.
“Once I get back into the swing of things I think I will be fine.
“I played at a high level in college and it is just about getting game tempo back.”
Sobey signed with the Taipans as a training squad player last August before earning a call-up to their main roster.
The 190-centimetre athlete was a key player in his two seasons at American college University of Wyoming, a National Collegiate Athletic Association division one school, and knew it would take time to adjust to his new role at Cairns.
“I have never done anything like this,” Sobey said.
“It is different but it’s been good.
“If I keep getting opportunities I need to keep making the most of it.
“I need to bring energy when I get my chance and just be solid.”
Taipans coach Aaron Fearne said Sobey was likely to suit up against Sydney this weekend with Maynard, who is nursing an injured thumb, expected to miss at least another week.
But Fearne said Sobey, a dedicated trainer, would have to work hard to get extended minutes at this stage of the season.
“He has been training but to be thrown into a game at this stage of the year is difficult,” he said.
“He played a little yesterday (against the Crocs) and did a good job.
“It is just about earning it and moving forward and slowly building on it.”
Fearne said Sobey would have to grasp any chances which came his way in the latter stages of the Taipans’ regular season campaign.
“I think it’ll be an opportunistic- type situation for him,” he said.
“But anything can happen with injuries and foul trouble.
“The big thing for those guys (on the cusp) is to work on their individual games and be ready.”
Fearne said Sobey was a committed team player who’d settled in well in Cairns.
“He is obviously a phenomenal athlete. He has changed his shot technique a bit to make improvements there and that will take time to be natural,"he said.
Sobey arrived at Cairns via SEABL club Ballarat Miners.