Forty-five years of friendship forged on netball courts will not dissipate when the Glenroy Grannies officially retire from the game this year.
Team captain Beryl Paterson said the 10 “girls” had already booked a trip to Koh Samui in Thailand for next month and were planning to head to Fiji in 2016.
But talk of the team’s retirement this year is a rather more sober matter.
Ms Paterson said the high-impact nature of the sport had taken its toll on the women, some of whom have had knee or hip replacements and are in their mid-to-late 70s.
“We decided while we are together it would be nice for us to retire as a team,” Ms Paterson said.
She said the team’s inaugural players started in their late 20s and early 30s in the Northern Ladies Netball Association. More recently, they have competed in the Broadmeadows Netball Association on Monday and Thursday nights.
Ms Paterson said the team was originally called “Glenroy” but morphed into the “Glenroy Grannies” after cheers from their children to “come on, you old grannies”.
About a decade ago, their longevity in the game began to be recognised. Awards and recognition began flowing from Vic Health and local MPs.
While it’s “a sad time”, Ms Paterson said: “Our netball might have ended but our friendship will last forever and our yearly overseas holidays, too.”