Netball life member

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Top effort...Award recepients (back from left) Diane Dickens, Ngami Prattley, Alison Cormack all of Eastern Southland, Liz Freeman, Cheryl Blair of South Otago, Anne Reid (front from left) Kerry Seymour of South Otago and Lauren Piebenga of Dunedin. PHOTO: NETBALL SOUTH.

A sporting involvement spanning 37 years has earned Eastern Southland netball stalwart Alison Cormack life membership of Netball South.

The honour was bestowed at Netball South Zone’s annual meeting in Invercargill on Saturday. Cormack is the first recipient since the organisation’s inception in 2012.

A former Southland Country representative player, Cormack embarked on her umpiring journey in 1988 and progressed through the ranks to officiate both nationally and internationally. She continues to mentor umpires and has been a dedicated member of the Netball Eastern Southland committee.

Service awards were also given to Noeline Scott, Kerry Seymour, Liz Freeman, Cheryl Blair (South Otago), Lauren Piebenga (Dunedin), Anne Reid, Ngami Prattley and Dianne Dickens.

Their combined contribution to Netball Eastern Southland totalled more than 260 years.

Netball South chairman Paul Buckner said 2017 was an “immensely positive” year for the zone, and the Southern Steel’s ANZ Premiership victory was one of many highlights.

“Everybody in the zone at every level can be proud of that,” Buckner said.

“I go up to the Netball New Zealand council meeting and honestly consider that the best zone in the country is this one,” he said.

“We are all about sustainability and that’s not just financial sustainability but relationships, as well.

“The togetherness of our centres and their connection to Netball South is constantly improving.”

Dunedin Netball representative Joyce Andrews credited Netball South with evolving the sport locally.

“You guys have moved netball forward in the zone. Sustainability is improving, as well as collaboration and we’re really looking forward to what’s in store,”Andrews said.

Netball South board member Adrienne Ensor confirmed the organisation had posted a $4000 surplus for the 2017 year.

“It’s the second year in a row that we’ve got a surplus, small as it may be. Any surplus is great,” Ensor said.