By Meg Kennedy
Entering footy finals are exciting enough, but for Springbank Football Netball Club there is even more cause for celebration.
The club’s ten-teams are headed to the finals this weekend, a first-ever event for the club. Teams include the A, B, C, 17&U, 15&U and 13&U netball sides alongside the Seniors, Reserves, Under 18 and 15 football sides.
The six netball teams and four football teams will compete in the preliminary finals in the Central Highlands Football and Netball Leagues, this Saturday.
The momentous achievement has got the entire club buzzing, with President Patrick O’Neil telling the Moorabool News that “everybody is naturally very excited” for the games.
“It’s great to have ten teams in there, but we all still feel we’ve got a lot of work to do,” he said.
“Hopefully we get a fair few of our teams to push deep into the finals – we don’t want to go there just to make up the numbers.”
The event is even more special for the Springbank Tigers, after the club went through “some dark days” for a period, struggling to increase membership numbers.
As Springbank doesn’t have a primary school, many junior players come from the surrounding towns in the district.
But Mr O’Neil sights the recent and rapid increase of junior numbers, who “have been really good this year,” as a testament to the families – both past and present – who are part of the club.
“As well as the long-unwavering commitment of the families that have never left the club, it’s been fantastic over the last few years to see a few of the old families come back; the sons and daughters of ladies and men who played both footy and netball years ago, which is really exciting,” he said.
Mr O’Neil thanked all the volunteers in the club, as well as “a pro-active committee”, saying that “it is a big commitment.”
“Without the volunteers, the place just doesn’t run.”
Springbank FNC will compete on the court and on the turf in the CHFL Preliminary Finals from Saturday 17 August.