21 December 2017 marks 40 years since Netball SA became an incorporated body.
To mark the milestone, we asked 40 individuals who have played an integral role in the sport over these years to share their favourite netball memory.
We began posting a memory each day for 40 days from Sunday 12 November on Netball SA Facebook’s page, with the final memory to be posted on 21 December. To read the memories, visit and like Netball SA’s Facebook page.
Among the individuals asked to be share their favourite memories are Adelaide Thunderbirds legends Marg Angove and Natalie von Bertouch, Matrics Premier League coach Jacqui Illman, and Southern Force coach Brian Lines. Here’s what they had to say:
Marg Angove OAM, former Adelaide Thunderbirds premiership coach.
“I find it difficult to name only one, so I’ve decided on five points.
- The opening of our own netball stadium.
- Coaching the Thunderbirds to back-to-back premierships in 1998 and ‘99. Four SA state teams took out national titles in 1998 – Thunderbirds, Lightning, 36ers and Crows – there was a huge street parade and celebrations for SA.
- The implementation of the Regional Scheme while I was Director of Coaching. This program has continued to develop and grow, and provides opportunities for all players, coaches and umpires in country SA.
- The mighty and fierce grand finals between Contax and Garville in the 80s and early 90s – there was a fantastic rivalry and huge followings with both teams’ supporters cheering their hearts out.
- Being the recipient of the Coach of the Century Award along with 10 players was a great honour.”
Jacqui Illman, Matrics Netball Club, Premier League coach.
“In 2011 Matrics came from third place to claim its third Premier League Premiership, and my first as coach. After being down in the do or die semi-final we came back in the second half to beat Woods, however unfortunately one of our defenders did her ACL. Our young defender then played the next two weeks with a broken finger.
The following week we played Contax in the prelim and were able to overcome the powerhouse club to earn a spot in the grand final. In the GF we met Jags who had dominated with GS Carla Borrego eligible to play and in fantastic form. We were seven up with only a few minutes left in the game but Jags and Borrego came home strong, and thankfully we held on coming up with a loose ball in the final seconds to win by a goal.”
Natalie Von Bertouch, former Adelaide Thunderbirds captain.
“My favourite netball memory was the 2013 Adelaide Thunderbirds premiership win at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre. It was my last game before retiring and to be able to win the game in front of a packed and passionate Adelaide crowd was a very special moment. I couldn’t have asked for a better fairy-tale finish.”
Brian Lines, Southern Force coach
“A favourite moment is hard to really define as there are so many great things about the netball community in South Australia. But there are two moments that are slightly aligned and they are the 1994 Mobil Super League Grand final (Contax versus Garville) and 1999 Commonwealth Bank Trophy Grand Final (Thunderbirds versus Ravens).
These are my favourites as they really showcased the talent South Australia had, as we were definitely at the top of the netball tree nationally with two SA teams competing in the National Competition Grand Finals. Australian players all over the court! Very proud Netball SA moments.”