Originally written by WAYNE DREW
ABOUT 1600 people packed into Hamilton’s Pedrina Park at the weekend to witness the 2006 VAYSAR Statewide Senior Football and Netball Championships.
More than 600 Koori sports people participated in the championships. Carnival chairman, Michael Bell, was ecstatic with the success of the carnival. “About 1600 people attended .Ê.Ê. it was a great,” Mr Bell said. “The venue (Pedrina Park) was great. It was the first time we’ve been able to play football and netball at the same venue. “Usually we have to play the football at one venue and the netball at another, but Pedrina Park was really good.” “We had 14 football teams with each team having 25 players plus five officials, and 24 netball teams with 10 players in each team.” Mr Bell said the standard of football and netball matches was excellent, with AFL stars, Nathan Lovett-Murray and Andrew Lovett, playing with the Lake Condah Wanderers. “Ronnie Burns also played with the Bunorong team.” The powerful Fitzroy All Stars won division one of the football carnival by defeating the Lake Condah Wanderers 7.3 to 3.13. The grand final was umpired by Hamilton’s Rob Logan and Steve Walker. Mr Logan was impressed with the standard of play over the entire carnival. “The games were very quick and the skills were very good,” he said. “Overall it was really good footy and was a magic carnival. “The carnival was really well organised and was a credit to the organisers.” Hamilton police Sergeant Graeme Arthur, was also high in praise of the carnival. “The carnival was excellent, everyone was well behaved and we had no issues at all. “The football itself was very good too, it was fast, and hard and tough.” Mr Bell said the co-operation his organisation received was a significant factor in the success of the carnival. “The Hamilton community and the Shire of Southern Grampians were fantastic with their help,” Mr Bell said. “Member for Wannon, David Hawker, also played a big part in helping us get funding. The accommodation houses were also great, there was not one person who was not housed over the weekend. “The assistance we received from the sporting clubs at Pedrina Park was also great. “St Andrew’s Cricket Club, the Hamilton Netball Association, the Western District Umpires Association and all the other sporting clubs that use Pedrina Park need to be acknowledged. “It was fantastic that we could use their facilities.”