While senior Ballarat Football Netball League clubs enjoy a weekend off, history will be made in junior competition when two teams under the same club banner meet at Alfredton Oval on Saturday across five grades.
Ballarat Football Netball Club, which already has the Ballarat Swans, introduced new team Ballarat Storm this season into 11/under reserves, 11/under seniors, 13/under reserves, 13/under seniors and 15/under reserves competition.
Ballarat junior netball coordinator Kylie Scobie said with girls being turned away due to limited spots on teams and the development of new suburb Lucas promising more growth, the club decided it was time to expand.
After adding a team to its football program last year, the club then turned to netball. Originally the target was two 11/under teams, but demand resulted in five additional teams.
“It has been a lot of work setting it up and there have been some pros and cons, and some life lessons learnt along the way, but as a club we hate seeing girls just turned away so we had to think about what we can do,” Scobie said. “Every girl who has wanted a game of netball has gotten a game of netball, and at the end of the day that’s what makes us happy.”
Saturday will be the first time the two teams meet each other and Scobie was predicting a close game.
And she believes it is only a matter of time before other clubs follow suit.
“There are that many girls out there just wanting to play that are missing out every year,” she said. “So, unless other clubs form, there will be a growing need.”