Nisha Rathode (Editor)

Ben Purser

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Basketball Player

Listed height
201 cm (6 ft 7 in)

94 kg

Listed weight
94 kg (207 lb)

Ben Purser

Pro career

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State Basketball League

24 February 1990 (age 34) Perth, Western Australia (

High school
Christ Church Grammar School (Perth, Western Australia)

Augusta State (2010–2011)

Small forward, Shooting guard

Augusta State University

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Benjamin Purser (born 24 February 1990) is an Australian basketball player for the Perry Lakes Hawks of the State Basketball League (SBL). A stalwart forward for the Hawks since 2008, Purser has also spent time in the National Basketball League with the Perth Wildcats as a development player, and played one season of college basketball in the United States for Augusta State University, helping the Jaguars win the 2011 Peach Belt Conference men's tournament championship.


Ben Purser Perth Wildcats Guarantee Ben Purser 2011 Involvement Perry Lakes

Known for his defensive qualities and all-round game style, Purser made his SBL debut in 2008 before taking out the league's Most Improved Player Award in 2009. He has also been involved in two Grand Final appearances with the Hawks, in 2009 and 2011.

Early life and junior career

Born and raised in Perth, Purser attended Christ Church Grammar School and played basketball, football and cricket as a youth. He graduated from Christ Church in 2007 and is now a member of the school's Old Boys' Association. As a junior, Purser played for Subiaco Basketball Club and represented the Perry Lakes Hawks in the Western Australian Basketball League (WABL). In July 2007, he helped WA Metro win silver at the Under 18 National Championships in Launceston, and in February 2008, he helped Western Australia win bronze at the Under 20 National Championships in Albury.

Early years (2008–2009)

In 2008, Purser made his debut for the Perry Lakes Hawks' SBL team. He began his SBL career under long-time Hawks coach John Gardiner, and helped the team claim the minor premiership with a 21–5 record. As a rookie, he saw action in 28 games, finishing with averages of 8.0 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game. Purser also played WABL during the 2008 season and was subsequently named to the WABL Mens Division 1 All-Star team for his efforts with the Hawks.

In February 2009, Western Australia's scoring trio of Purser, Cody Ellis and Reece Maxwell helped the state finish fourth at the Under 20 National Championships in Townsville.

The 2009 SBL season saw Purser become a figurehead for the Hawks in just his second year. On April 4, in just the sixth game of the season, he recorded his first career triple-double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists in a 111–98 win over the Perth Redbacks. He later had another double digit rebounding game on April 17, recording 14 points and 13 rebounds in a 106–103 loss to the South West Slammers. On May 16, he scored a season-high 28 points in a 122–101 win over the Mandurah Magic. The Hawks finished the regular season in sixth place on the ladder with a 17–9 record and advanced through to the grand final for the first time since 2005. However, the Hawks were outclassed in the season decider, losing 85–77 to the first-seeded Lakeside Lightning. In just under 36 minutes of grand final action, Purser recorded eight points, two assists, one rebound and one steal. He fouled out late in the match with his sixth personal foul. At Basketball WA's end of season awards night, Purser was named the recipient of the Most Improved Player Award. He appeared in 28 of the team's 31 games in 2009, averaging 13.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game.

FIBA Oceania Tournament (2009)

In June 2009, Purser travelled with an Australian Under 20 national side to Saipan to compete in the 2009 FIBA Oceania Tournament, sacrificing three SBL games in order to make his debut on the international basketball stage. They played against the senior men's teams of New Caledonia, New Zealand, Fiji, Palau, Tahiti, Guam and Northern Marianas. Despite this, Australia won the gold medal after dominating the tournament. A highlight for Purser was a 13-point performance against the Northern Mariana Islands, a game Australia won 107–41.

Continued improvement (2010)

In 2010, Purser continued to show improvement with the Hawks, scoring in double figures in all but one game and recording seven double-doubles. On March 20, in just the third game of the season, Purser tied his career high of 28 points in a 140–84 win over the Cockburn Cougars. With a 15–11 record, the Hawks finished the regular season in sixth place on the ladder for the second year in a row, going on to lose to the third-seeded Geraldton Buccaneers in the quarter-finals, falling 2–0. In 26 games for the Hawks in 2010, Purser averaged 17.8 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game. He also recorded a career-high 42 steals during the season, good for 1.6 per game.

Augusta State (2010–2011)

Following the conclusion of the 2010 SBL season, Purser left for a basketball scholarship at Augusta State University (ASU) in the United States. He transferred his two and a half years of Law/Commerce Studies at UWA to ASU where he hoped to complete his studies as well as play for the Augusta Jaguars. Purser impressed Jaguars' head coach Dip Metress during the 2010–11 season, as he managed to appear in all 34 games while receiving 11 starting assignments. He finished the season as the fourth-leading scorer on the team with 7.7 points per game, and also averaged 3.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 20.9 minutes per game. ASU matched a school record with 30 wins in 2010–11 and made its fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance. The Jaguars claimed the Peach Belt Conference Championship and won the PBC Tournament title with a 76–59 win over UNC Pembroke in the final.

Another grand final appearance (2011)

In April 2011, Purser returned to Perth and re-joined the Hawks, making his season debut on May 6 after missing the team's first nine games of the season. In July 2011, he announced that he would not be returning to Augusta State for the 2011–12 season due to complications with his UWA units not matching up with ASU, as well as his desire to play professionally in Australia. Coming off his time playing in the United States, Purser was a dominant force for the Hawks during the 2011 season, scoring in double figures in all but one game for the second straight year and recording five double-doubles. On June 6, he had a season-best game with 16 points, a career-high 21 rebounds, seven assists and one steal in a 94–85 win over the Goldfields Giants. He later had back-to-back games of 28 points on July 10 and July 16. The Hawks finished the regular season in fourth place on the ladder with a 17–9 record and made their way through to another grand final appearance. This time they faced their arch rivals, the Wanneroo Wolves, where they were defeated 88–83 despite an 18-point performance from Purser. In 22 games for the Hawks in 2011, he averaged 18.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.0 steals per game.

Perth Wildcats (2011–2013)

Soon after parting ways with Augusta State, Purser signed with the Perth Wildcats as a development player for the 2011–12 NBL season. He showed a lot of potential in his first season, as he scored 20 total points in 10 games and was nominated for the NBL's Round 23 Play of the Week for an impressive cut to the basket against the Cairns Taipans. In just his third game for the Wildcats on 23 December 2011, Purser had his best scoring performance for the club, recording six points on 3-of-3 shooting in an 86–62 home win over the New Zealand Breakers. The Wildcats finished the 2011–12 season in second spot on the ladder with a 19–9 record, and went on to lose to the New Zealand Breakers 2–1 in the best-of-three Grand Final series.

In March 2012, Purser was named captain of the Perry Lakes Hawks, becoming one of the youngest captains in the SBL. His first season as captain, however, did not go as planned, as the Hawks missed the playoffs for the first time since 1992, dropping from runners-up in 2011 to 10th place in 2012 with an 11–15 record. He missed seven games during the season, managing to appear in 19 of the team's 26 contests. He set a career high for double-doubles in a season with nine, and on May 26, he scored a then career-high 32 points in a 95–90 win over the Willetton Tigers after playing out the entire 48 minutes of the game. He finished with averages of 17.2 points, 9.0 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game.

Following the conclusion of the 2012 SBL season, Purser re-joined the Wildcats as a development player for the 2012–13 NBL season. He received a lot more opportunities in 2012–13, appearing in 13 regular season games and one playoff game, and even travelled with the team to Auckland to face the New Zealand Breakers for their season opener. He travelled to Auckland again later in the year, as he filled in for the injured Cameron Tovey. For the second year in a row, the Wildcats finished in second spot on the ladder behind the Breakers with a 22–6 record, and once again made the Grand Final series where they lost to New Zealand in a 2–0 sweep. Over 14 contests, Purser totalled 11 points, thus completing his two-year development player stint with the Wildcats having played in 24 games while averaging 1.3 points per game.

In 2013, Purser helped the Hawks return to championship contenders playing under coach Shawn Dennis. Dennis later departed the club mid-season for a head coaching job in the NBL, and Charles Nix took over the reins. Purser was again a dominant force during the 2013 season, recording six double-doubles, scoring three 30+ point games, and earned a reputation as a lock-down defender. On July 26, he scored a career-high 34 points in a 104–97 win over the Perth Redbacks. The Hawks finished the regular season in second spot on the ladder with an 18–8 record, their best finish since Purser's rookie season. Purser led the Hawks to an eventual semi-final match-up against the Wanneroo Wolves where they lost the best-of-three series 2–0. In 29 games for the Hawks in 2013, he averaged 17.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.0 steals per game.

On 8 September 2013, Purser represented the Wildcats in the team's preseason exhibition game against the SBL All-Stars. In 21 minutes of action off the bench, he recorded four points, three rebounds, two assists and one steal in a 93–79 win. This game marked Purser's last gig with the Wildcats as he was not offered a full-time contract by the club for the 2013–14 season. Due to his age, he was unable to continue on as a development player in 2013–14.

Post-Wildcats stint (2014–present)

In 2014, Purser was able to devote his full attention to the Hawks for the first time in his career, with college and the Wildcats behind him. However, despite having picked up 2013 Grand Final MVP Justin Cecil from the Lakeside Lightning, and having returned to form in 2013, the Hawks struggled in 2014 and quickly fell out of the playoff race. Purser continued to play well though, scoring in double figures in all but one game and recording seven double-doubles. On May 23, he recorded his second career triple-double with 28 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists in a 138–134 double overtime win over the Stirling Senators. On June 21, he scored a season-high 31 points in a 111–107 loss to the Joondalup Wolves. The Hawks finished the regular season in 10th spot on the ladder with an 11–15 record, the same record the Hawks missed the playoffs with in 2012. Purser appeared in all 26 games for the Hawks in 2014, averaging a career-high 20.8 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game.

In 2015, the Hawks' recruitment of exciting import point guard Bryton Hobbs sparked the team back into playoff contention. With Hobbs out injured on May 23 against the Geraldton Buccaneers, Purser capitalised and had a season-best game with 27 points and 14 rebounds in a 105–88 loss. On July 4, Purser bested this performance with a 29-point, 14-rebound outing in his 200th SBL game. Played in Kalgoorlie against the Goldfields Giants, the Hawks won the game with a 104–102 overtime victory. Purser helped lead the Hawks back to the playoffs with a 12–14 record, good for eighth spot on the ladder. In the quarter-finals, they faced off against the first-seeded Joondalup Wolves. In a tight fought series, the Hawks were defeated 2–1, with only eight points separating the two teams over the three games. Purser appeared in all 29 games for the Hawks in 2015, averaging 18.1 points, a career-high 9.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game. Throughout the season, he recorded a career-high 12 double-doubles.

Purser struggled with his shot early on in the 2016 season, shooting 38% over the first 10 games as the Hawks started 5–5. On 7 May 2016, he scored a season-high 31 points on 12-of-22 shooting, including 4-of-4 from three-point range, in a 92–91 loss to the Willetton Tigers, marking his first 30-point game since 27 June 2014. On May 19, he was named a starter on the SBL North All-Stars team. In the June 6 SBL All-Star Game, Purser recorded 12 points and 8 rebounds in 20½ minutes of action in a 116–104 loss to the South All-Stars. On July 3, he recorded 21 points and a then season-high 16 rebounds in a 111–89 win over the South West Slammers. In the Hawks' regular season finale on July 29, Purser scored 24 points and grabbed a career-high tying 21 rebounds in a 102–96 win over the Kalamunda Eastern Suns. The win booked the Hawks a place in the playoffs, as they finished eighth on the ladder with an 11–15 record. They went on to lose 2–1 in the quarter-finals for the second straight season, as they were defeated by the first-seeded Cockburn Cougars. Purser appeared in all 29 games for the Hawks for the second straight season, but his 15.8 points per game was his lowest mark since the 2009 season. He still managed 9.0 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 1.0 steals, while recording 10 double-doubles throughout the season. At Basketball WA's end of season awards night, Purser was named in the inaugural SBL All-Defensive Five team.

In the Hawks' 2017 season opener on March 17, Purser scored an equal team-high 23 points to go with nine rebounds, six assists and two seals while playing the entire 40 minutes of the 94–87 loss to the Stirling Senators. On March 31, he scored an equal game-high 25 points in a 97–90 win over the Cockburn Cougars. On June 10, in his 250th SBL game, Purser scored a team-high 22 points in a 74–69 loss to the Goldfields Giants in Kalgoorlie. The Hawks finished the regular season in eighth position with a 12–14 record, and faced the first-seeded Willetton Tigers in the quarter-finals. In Game 1 of the series, Purser had 17 points, 12 rebounds and six assists in helping the Hawks claim a shock 90–80 win. However, the Hawks went on to lose the series 2–1 to bow out of the quarter-finals for the third straight season. In 27 games for the Hawks, he averaged 14.3 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game. At Basketball WA's end of season awards night, Purser was named in the SBL All-Defensive Five team for the second straight year.

Career statistics

Correct as of 4 July 2015

Australia Junior Championships

Source: FoxSportsPulse, FoxSportsPulse


Purser's father, Andrew, is a former Australian rules footballer who played in the Victorian Football League (VFL) for the Footscray Football Club from 1983 to 1987.


Ben Purser Wikipedia

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