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Netball and Softball national team to be honoured at Hall of Fame Dinner

Two of Australia’s world championship winning teams will be honoured with the Team Sport Australia Award when the Sport Australia Hall of Fame celebrates its 30th anniversary in Melbourne next week.

The 1965 Australian women’s softball team who won the inaugural softball world championships and the all-conquering 1999 Australian women’s netball team, who won a third consecutive world championship crown, will be honoured at the ceremony.

The softball and netball teams will join the likes of the 1948 Invincibles cricket team, the Sydney Olympic gold medal winning Hockeyroos and the Kookaburra’s triumphant 2004 team, Australia II America’s Cup crew and the Socceroos teams of 1974 and 2000 among the teams previously honoured with the award. Previous award winners can be found here.

Introduced in 2002, the Team Sport Australia Award recognises teams who have contributed significantly to Australia’s reputation as a great sporting nation.

1965 Softball champions defied the odds

Australia’s women’s softball side became the inaugural softball world champions when they defeated the heavily favoured USA 1-0 in the final in Melbourne. In addition to the team’s success, pitcher Lorraine Woolley was voted player of the series. To this day, the team remains Australia’s only women’s softball world champions.


Norma Allsopp

Marjorie Scott

Margaret Dodds

Sandra Sommerville

Rita Gherardin

Margaret Swann

Elinor McKenzie*

Nancy Whittingham

Helena Meehan

Lorraine Woolley (Vice Captain)

Nina Menner

Coach: Myrtle Edwards*

Marjorie ‘Midge’ Nelson BEM

Assistant Coach: Audrey McLaughlin

Gladys Phillips (Captain)*

Manager: Merle Short*

Judy Pizaro*

Scorer: Bess Dornan*

* deceased

Names in bold – confirmed to attend the gala dinner on Thursday


Diamonds net a triple treat

The Diamonds will be honoured for their come-from-behind victory over New Zealand’s Silver Ferns at the 1999 world championship in New Zealand. Trailing at three-quarter time, Australia produced an inspiring comeback that was sealed by Sharelle McMahon’s final minute goal. The win gave Australia its third straight world title.


Jennifer Borlase

Sharelle McMahon

Jacqui Delaney

Shelley O’Donnell

Liz Ellis

Rebecca Sanders

Sharon Finnan

Peta Scholz

Kathryn Harby

Carissa Tombs

Janine Ilitch

Vicki Wilson (Captain)

Coach: Jill McIntosh


The awards will be part of Australian sport’s night-of-nights, with the 30th anniversary milestone occasion celebrating the 525 Australian sporting greats who are the members of the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.

Members who represent the pinnacle of 160 years of sporting excellence including Sir Donald Bradman AC, Dawn Fraser AO MBE, Betty Cuthbert AM MBE, Rod Laver MBE, Leigh Matthews, Wally Lewis AM, John Eales AM, Mick Doohan AM, Greg Norman AC, Catherine Freeman OAM, John Coates AC and Bruce McAvaney OAM.

Presented by Etihad Airways, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame annual dinner brings together the who’s who of Australian sporting royalty in the one room for one night each year, to celebrate our nation’s sporting successes, and inspire our nation’s sporting future.

Established in 1985, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame plays a very important role in preserving and celebrating our rich sporting heritage, whilst promoting the values of courage, sportsmanship, integrity, mateship, persistence, excellence, underpinned by generosity, modesty, pride and ambition.

The Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner will be held next Thursday 9th October at Palladium at Crown, Melbourne. Commencing at 6:00pm, the ceremony will see the largest collective gathering of Australian sporting heroes and luminaries.

Awards on the night will include:

  • Eight inductees into The Sport Australia Hall of Fame
  • Elevation of one Member to become the “36th Legend of Australian Sport”
  • Presentation of “The Don” Award
  • Awarding of five Scholarships to future champions, each assigned a Member as their Mentor


2022 SAHOF Annual Report

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