Penaluna Set To Miss 2016/17 WNBL Season
In what can only be termed as the toughest decision of a very successful basketball career, Deakin Melbourne Boomers co-captain Elyse Penaluna has shelved plans to play in the coming 2016/17 WNBL season, succumbing to further complications with her troublesome right knee.
With surgery needed, followed by an extended period of rehabilitation, Penaluna decided to sit the season out ahead of re-assessing her future at a later date.
“I’m absolutely devastated to be sitting out this upcoming season. It has been the hardest decision I’ve had to make but I know it’s the right one for myself and the group,” said Penaluna
Boomers Coach Guy Molloy was understandably compassionate for Penaluna and hoped that she could rekindle her career at some stage in the future.
“Elyse is a really valuable part of the Boomers family, so we are all feeling for her right now and understand how tough this decision must have been,” said Molloy, adding, “It was a very courageous conversation to have with her teammates, I’m really proud of Elyse in what is a very trying time for her.
“Such is the regard we hold Elyse in, she was to co-captain the team this season. No doubt her leadership and experience amongst the group will be missed, but I’m confident that this presents as an opportunity for others step up, which I’m sure they will,” added Molloy.
Penaluna was preparing for her second season back with the Boomers having previously won a championship with the club back in season 2010/11.
General Manager Justin Nelson has no doubt everyone at the club will rally around Penaluna and support her decision.
“For Elyse it’s a mix of sadness, frustration and disappointment, but she has outstanding character and throughout our talks about the situation she finds herself in at no time did she deviate away from the team, it was a very selfless conversation,” said Nelson.
“Though we’re not sure what the future holds right now, I can assure you that Elyse will continue to be a part of the Boomers Family and we will support her with a role in the front office. We hold our family values high, it’s what the Boomers are respected for and we’ll make sure that Elyse remains within the family,” added Nelson.
With surgery already complete, Penaluna believes that a break from the rigours of playing will help her to rest and assess her future at the right time.
“I want to wish the team all the best for the upcoming season, they are a great group of girls with a lot of talent. I know they are going to have some great success on the court and I’m looking forward to cheering them on from the sidelines,” said Penaluna, adding, “I’d like to thank Justin and the board for their ongoing support with work opportunities and also thank Guy for his support and understanding. This is why I love the Boomers family.”