It will be a Home Opener like very few before it, a celebration if you will, an afternoon of WNBL action dedicated to one of the most passionate supporters you are likely to ever come across within the Boomers family, let alone the WNBL.
The Deakin Melbourne Boomers will open its 33rd year in the WNBL on Sunday afternoon October 9 with the memory of Linda Perry firmly etched in a club culture like few others. The Boomers are renowned for sticking together, working hard, battling the odds and for putting family first, and to that end few could argue that Linda, who lost a battle with cancer earlier this year, lived and breathed every one of these traits immeasurably.
Years of passion and dedication to the Boomers, as a supporter, member, volunteer, administrator and leader, Linda Perry will be remembered prior to the team’s opening game of the season against Adelaide amongst family and friends.
Bulleen-Templestowe Basketball Club President, Mike Connell is urging all Boomers supporters to attend the game and help celebrate the life of an amazing supporter.
“I’d encourage all our Bulleen Boomers players and fans, past and present, to come along to the Melbourne Boomers game this Sunday and pay tribute to our late, much loved Life Member and President, Linda Perry, and celebrate the 32-year contribution of the Bulleen-Templestowe Basketball Club to the Melbourne Boomers WNBL. Linda’s blood ran with the Boomers colours, we’d love to see a sea of Blue and Gold at the game!”
Despite her personal battle, Linda barely missed an opportunity to work on the Boomers. It was a passion that was clear for all to see.
“Though I knew Linda for years, often crossing paths around basketball venues, it was only over the last couple of years I had the chance to work with her at the Boomers and I can attest to her enormous passion for anything and everything to do with this WNBL organisation,” recalls Boomers General Manager Justin Nelson.
“I can barely remember a day that Linda and I didn’t talk about the team, the next game, a player, the future. Her love for the Boomers was amazing, but most of all her absolute love for the players was incredible. She loved every single one of them, she never played favourites. The players would always smile when Linda walked into training, and in particular during her last few visits, you could see the team lift when Linda took up a seat court-side.”
The October 9 game will feature a tribute to Linda during the pre-match from 2.30pm. It will also signal a change in ownership for the Boomers with the WNBL license recently being passed by Bulleen-Templestowe Basketball Club over to a new ownership group.
“Linda always wanted this WNBL operation to expand, to grow and do bigger and better things for everyone in basketball across Melbourne, but none of us will ever forget the hard yards Linda did, alongside many others, in making sure the Boomers survived.”
“This is our thirty-third year in the WNBL, the Boomers name lives on and I know that Linda will be looking down on all of us this Sunday, and she will be damn proud that the Boomers are alive and growing, smiling with the knowledge that all of us across Melbourne’s basketball community are committed to ensuring this iconic WNBL team is here for many years to come,” beams Nelson.
Melbourne’s new Chair, Tony Hallam, believes the opening game should be a time to reflect, but also mark an opportunity to look forward with confidence.
“We feel very privileged to be the custodians of this iconic club,” says Hallam, adding, “The history of the Boomers is immense and the board is well aware of the incredible job BTBC and leaders like Linda Perry have done for more than three decades.”
“It’s important Melbourne has an elite-level women’s basketball team to support, future sustainability is vital and together we all play a role in making this happen. The history of the Boomers is important to us and we want all supporters to continue as valuable members of the Boomers family.”
Tickets for the opening game are now on sale and available at www.trybooking.com/BOOMERS