Not even some early morning drizzle was enough to dampen the Penrith District Netball Association’s (PDNA) annual March Past event last weekend.
Held at Jamison Park Netball Courts last Saturday morning, the annual March Past sees netball clubs from across the entire Penrith district come together to celebrate the start of the netball season.
A Penrith Netball tradition of 40 years, this year’s March Past was won by Corpus Christi Netball Club while Cambridge Park Netball Club were deemed runners-up for the second straight year.
Speaking with the Weekender, PDNA President Joy Gillett said it was a welcome first time win for the Cranebrook-based club.
“They’ve never won it before, so that was really nice for them,” she said.
“Cambridge Park feel a bit like the bridesmaid rather than the bride but they have also won it in recent times.”
This year’s March Past was judged by local Federal MP Fiona Scott and a number of players from the Panthers Netball NSW Premier League team.
Ms Gillett said the field was narrowed down to four finalists before a winner was chosen in rather unique circumstances.
“There were four clubs as finalists and the judging panel asked each club to do their best panther roar, and the club with the best roar ended up the winner,” she said.
“It was certainly something different but everyone had fun.”
Following the traditional March Past, more than 3500 players from 21 clubs took to the courts to get the 2016 season underway.
Ms Gillett said there’d been a slight increase to participation numbers on previous years.
“Numbers have gone up this year by about 100 players,” she said.
“Possibly the Netball World Cup in Sydney last year attributed to that plus we’ve been doing a fair bit of work on junior development by trying to get the young ones into netball.”
Meanwhile, Ms Gillett revealed that PDNA will host the 2017 State Age Netball Championships in July next year.
Nathan Taylor is the Weekender’s Deputy Editor and Senior Sports Writer. He also compiles the weekly Chatter on the Box TV column. Nathan is an award-winning journalist, who has worked at the Weekender for nearly a decade.