Jervis back North with the Bullets

Jeremy Tyler of the Kings and Tom Jervis of the Bullets challenge for the ball during the Round 9 NBL match between the Sydney Kings and Brisbane Bullets at Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney, Saturday, December 9, 2017. Picture: AAP Image/Jeremy Ng.
Jeremy Tyler of the Kings and Tom Jervis of the Bullets challenge for the ball during the Round 9 NBL match between the Sydney Kings and Brisbane Bullets at Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney, Saturday, December 9, 2017. Picture: AAP Image/Jeremy Ng.

IN ANOTHER life, Tom Jervis is the Taipans' starting centre for a decade and becomes a fan favourite in Cairns.

In a sliding-door moment for Jervis' career, the now-Brisbane Bullets centre was overlooked for a roster spot in the Far North way back in 2011 before being snapped up by the Perth Wildcats a year later.

The 30-year-old was selected for a Snakes' tour of China in 2011 and was even taken in a FNQ Super League draft, second overall, by Saints before returning to Western Australia to play with the East Perth Eagles in their SBL.

Jervis cannot remember who got the roster spot before him in Cairns that year as he prepares to play the Taipans on Thursday night.

"Hopefully the club kick themselves about it now," Jervis said with his tongue firmly planted in his cheek about being overlooked.

"I am sure they do not because they have a fantastic squad in Cairns."

When the big man did finally land his opportunity with the Wildcats, he found his feet pretty quickly as he received the NBL Rookie of the Year in 2014, an NBL championship season.

He then backed it up with another title two seasons later.

Jervis, averaging almost 11 points and five rebounds a night this season, would rather look forward than dwell on the past.

"It is crazy how things work out, you miss out on something and then another thing opens up down the track," Jervis said.

"There was a year or so between my stint with Cairns and then getting picked up with Perth.

"Now that I look back on it, it is a blessing that my legs do not have the big miles in them from playing NBL back then and even though I am a little older, I'm not carrying injuries and my body feels great.

"I really enjoyed my times in Cairns and it was one of those situations where there was only a few spots open for that time in my career.

"It turned out that it was not the right time or right place type of thing."

Just like Jervis did last season with a return against the Wildcats, Bullets teammate Travis Trice returns to Cairns for the first time tomorrow night.

"Hopefully he is received well by the Cairns crowd," Jervis said.

"Travis loves the playing group and the town and I would hope they would give him a good reception.

"It does not matter if it is a frosty one, we are there to get the job done for Brisbane."



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