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Media Release - Knox-Boomers partnership to inspire a new generation of hoop dreams

Knox-Boomers Partnership

Participation in sport across the outer eastern suburbs will be the big winner out of an historic new partnership announced by Knox City Council and leading Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) Club, the Deakin Melbourne Boomers, on Sunday evening.

The partnership, worth $160,000 annually over five years, will deliver unprecedented access to elite female sport, while supporting a host of Council community engagement activities and initiatives across Knox.

Through its partnership with the Boomers, Council aims to strengthen the ongoing elite basketball program at Knox Regional Sports Park (KRSP) to further reinforce its positioning as the State’s premiere basketball facility.

While boosting participation in local sport is a key objective of the partnership, of equal importance will be the availability of Boomers’ players to encourage and inspire budding athletes of the future, in particular girls and women.

This will involve Boomers’ player appearances at community activities and events across Knox and, also through tailored content that supports these objectives. Fostering the growth and development of female participation in sport at a grass roots, regional and elite level will be a key focus of the Boomers’ involvement with Council’s community engagement activities.

News of the partnership follows the announcement by the State Government last year of $82 million funding for the expansion and upgrading of the KRSP, including a new show court and upgraded facilities for the Boomers. Knox City Council will contribute a total of $25 million towards the project, which will deliver:

  • Ten (10) new community courts for local basketball competitions;
  • A new gymnastics facility suitable for regional level competition; and
  • Conversion of existing 5-a-side soccer pitches to one (1) full size field and six (6) new 5-a-side pitches, as well as extension to the existing pavilion.

As ‘Melbourne’s team’, the Deakin Melbourne Boomers is the oldest WNBL Club, home to more Olympians and Opals than any other, and the longest running elite-level women’s sports team in Australia. Finishing second on the ladder in the 2018/19 WNBL season, the Boomers are starting their finals campaign on 27 January, hoping to go one better than last season and win the Championship.

Quotes attributable to the Mayor, Cr Jake Keogh:

  • Knox City Council is absolutely thrilled to unveil this fantastic and innovative partnership with leading WNBL Club, the Deakin Melbourne Boomers.
  • This partnership will, over the course of its duration, deliver benefits to our community far in excess of Council’s total funding contribution to the partnership.
  • This includes delivering unprecedented access to elite female sport in outer eastern Melbourne, cementing the status of the Knox Regional Sports Park as the state’s premiere basketball facility, and engaging Boomers’ players and administrators as part of Council’s wider community engagement activities.
  • There will be girls and boys who will be inspired to be the best they can be in life as a result of this collaboration – and Knox City Council is proud to be a part of it.

Quotes attributable to Chair Deakin Melbourne Boomers, Tony Hallam:

  • The Deakin Melbourne Boomers are honored to enter into this milestone partnership with Knox City Council. We extend a big thank you to the Knox City Council Mayor Jake Keogh, Councillors, members and team for believing in the Boomers.
  • The Boomers have a bright future ahead, both on and off the court. The investment will have a direct impact on the Knox community through Council programs and on game day – showcasing and giving access to positive role models that young girls and boys can look up to.
  • The partnership allows us to put more resources into player and coach development and help secure the sustainability of our club, as well as supporting our players, coaches, off-court team and fans to reach their full potential.
  • As a Club, we are passionate about empowering women in sport to achieve their goals. Knox City Council has demonstrated the same – and are putting money towards making it happen.
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