A TALENTED young basketball player’s career took a huge leap forward when he became the first ever Brit to join one of the world’s biggest clubs.

Year 11 pupil Matthew Marsh, of John Madejski Academy, has made the switch to FC Barcelona Basketball Club.

The 15-year-old, who stands at 6ft 10ins tall, accepted a two-year scholarship with the Spanish Giants and will begin in September this year.

He said: “I am delighted to be going to Barcelona to continue to develop my basketball career following an enjoyable and successful year with the Rockets and JMA where the support from coaches and staff has enabled me to pursue my dream career for which I am really grateful."

Mr Hush was raised in Penryn in Cornwall and started his career with a local team.

Last year, he left home to join JMA’s basketball programme and excelled under Alan Deane, head coach.

After eight months, his talent was spotted by Barcelona, who swooped in quickly to offer him a deal.

Matt Johnson, director of Basketball at JMA, said: “It is a momentous day for Matthew and his family, and an incredibly proud moment for our school and club. It’s not often that these opportunities arise and for Matthew we are so pleased.

“He absolutely deserves this and I am sure he will make the most of this chance too. The coaches and support he has received from the school and club has been of top level and he has thrived in his time here.”

Head coach Keane added: “Matthew has worked hard at the academy this season, and although he is still new to the sport he has worked hard to get his body in great shape and will relish the chance to be in one of the best performance environments in the world! We look forward to keeping in contact and following his progress.”