The past week (and a bit) in sport has been a busy one for Australians, but especially Tasmanians. And while not everything goes your way, the Apple Isle has been blessed with an extra taste of that winning feeling across the sporting landscape. Starting with last weekend, the Tasmania JackJumpers played in an NBL classic against the Cairns Taipans up in far-north Queensland. In a match with several lead-changes, neither side could be separated at the full-time buzzer, meaning there would be overtime at the Snake Pit. And in a chaotically makeshift final play, it was the always-smiling, motivating messenger (see his Twitter/X profile for proof) Jack McVeigh who stepped up. Or rather he stepped back, draining a three from way beyond the arc, much to the surprise of the commentators who sounded like they were already preparing for a second OT and the disappointment of the Cairns crowd. It was a crucial victory for the streaky JackJumpers who have created a three-win buffer inside the playoff spots and who did not want to carry a losing run into the international break. Many Australians would have stayed up to watch at least India's batting innings on Sunday night for the cricket World Cup final at the 130,000-capacity Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. But not many are as 'committed' (more likely tragic) as this writer and would have watched all the way through to Glenn Maxwell's winning runs and the awkward trophy celebration that followed in front of 20,000 devastated Indian fans. Now, a keen observer might spot that there was not a Tasmanian in the Travis Head-inspired XI which played that day, nor was there one in the entire squad. But one person who had a massive role in winning the country's sixth World Cup and bringing the full furore of India's online community was Launceston-born selector George Bailey. One thing Australia have been applauded for since Pat Cummins lifted the trophy and Mitch Marsh 'disgustingly' put his feet on it, was their tactical decisions on and off the field. The champions, through their Longford-raised, decided to keep Head in the squad despite missing the first half of the tournament through injury. He would go on to produce man of the match performances in both the semi-final and final. The other key player with the bat was Marnus Labuschagne, who Bailey and co. selected over Marcus Stoinis. The South African-born Queenslander led the tournament in run-outs and put on a mammoth 192-run partnership in the final under immense pressure. A product of South Launceston Cricket Club and Launceston Grammar, Bailey was the unsung hero of Australia's remarkable campaign. There have been a raft of questions posed to supporters of the AFL's 19th licence being handed to Tasmania, with one of them: Does the state produce enough talent to be able to sustain its own team? A look back at previous years does not give an inspiring answer. That was until Monday and Tuesday night when Colby McKercher, Ryley Sanders, James Leake and Arie Schoenmaker had their names called at the AFL Draft, with the Northern Tasmanian quartet injecting some much-needed assurance that Tasmania could produce its own talent. Selected at pick two by North Melbourne, McKercher became the highest-drafted prospect to come through the Tasmanian football pathway, before Sanders made it two from the state in the top 10 and Leake became the third in the first round. It was a much more nervous wait for Schoenmaker, who despite being predicted by many to go in the 20-30 range, slid to third-last pick of the entire draft at 62 where St Kilda picked him up. Having four draftees come out of a place the size of Launceston is remarkable all by itself, but coupled with the year gone in Tasmanian football, the impact could be far greater. Finishing last in the one-day cup and second-bottom in the Sheffield Shield last season, the Tasmanian Tigers' men had a lot of work to do if they were to get close to matching the women's WNCL efforts in the 2023-24 campaign. With two games to play, the Tigers sit an improved fourth in the 50-over competition, but the real success has come in the four-day format. The only unbeaten side after five rounds, the Tigers have won three matches - including a thumping of NSW Blues by an innings and one run this week - and sit top of the table. Their three victories has already beaten last season's tally and if the likes of Beau Webster can continue their impressive form, the Tigers stand a real chance of returning to the final for the first time since their Shield win in 2013.