The Deakin Melbourne Boomers tip-off its 33rd WNBL season this Sunday afternoon, not only continuing its position as the most iconic women’s basketball team in Australia, but also placing it above all others when it comes to playing in a national women’s sport competition. Any sport.
This Sunday’s pre-game will feature a passing over of the baton, so to speak, with a new ownership group taking over the WNBL license from Bulleen-Templestowe Basketball Club earlier this year. It will be a momentous occasion for many people, with Boomers supporters, administrators and players stretching back more than three decades expected to be in attendance.
“It’s a significant day for the Boomers, no doubt, but it’s also about moving this iconic club into its 33rd season,” said General Manager Justin Nelson.
“There is much to celebrate and plenty to look forward to. I can’t wait to see everyone’s reaction on Sunday when they see some of the development’s that have taken place at our home venue, the State Basketball Centre,” said Nelson, adding, “I don’t want to give anything away, but I know people are going to be really pleased to see what we’ve been up to.”
Following strong crowd growth last season, Nelson believes Melbourne’s basketball community is becoming more passionate about women’s basketball and really enjoying the elite-level action the WNBL offers.
“We are fortunate to have some of the absolute best female basketball players right here in the WNBL, our Australian players are globally recognised for their talent out on the court. The opportunity for aspiring players to come and watch them, and then also meet them after games, is terrific.”
The connection between the crowd and the players after every game is something “very special” according to Nelson.
“Personally I don’t think any other sports league, men or women, connects the fans with the players as well as we do here at the Boomers, and across the WNBL. It’s a great strength of our league and the fans love it. There is no doubt that meeting the players out on court after each game is a highlight,” said Nelson.
The Boomers developed and introduced two holiday-eve blockbusters last season and they plan to make them even bigger this season.
“October 31 and January 25, mark those dates down,” urges Nelson.
“Those two holiday eves now sit very comfortably within the WNBL, and in particular amongst the basketball community here in Melbourne. Make no mistake, out goal is to fill the State Basketball Centre for two great match-ups between the Boomers and our rivals, Dandenong Rangers, on the eve of Melbourne Cup Day and Australia Day.”
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Melbourne’s Home Opener against Adelaide tips-off at 3pm this Sunday at the State Basketball Centre. The game will also feature a tribute to long-time supporter, member and administrator, Linda Perry.