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Monday, 19 October 2015
Page: 11549

Mrs McNAMARA (Dobell) (13:56): I rise to congratulate the Berkeley Vale Panthers women's rugby league team, who recently became the 2015 Sydney Metropolitan Women's Rugby League tier B minor and major champions. The Berkeley Vale Panthers, led by co-captains Melanie Sutton and Keri Tuatara, defeated the Berala Bears in a convincing 32-16 win, which each side fighting desperately for the upper hand in a tightly contested first half. Berkeley Vale lead at half time with 16-12. The final 20 minutes saw Berkeley Vale pull out their strength and win the Sydney Metropolitan grand final. Congratulations to Isabelle Kelly, who scored five tries in the grand final and was named player of the match.

The women's team then entered into the Harmony Cup as the Central Coast Pink Panthers and played against teams representing Malta, Latin America, the Mediterranean, Africa, Fiji, Lebanon, the Cook Islands and Australian Indigenous communities, to name a few. The Panthers won, becoming the inaugural premiers over the Victorian Marvels in the grand final. A big congratulations to Charmayne Nathan, who was named in the Australian Jillaroos squad for the Auckland Nines tournament in New Zealand next year.

I am very proud of the Berkeley Vale Panthers for winning the grand final in the first season in the competition. Their spirit and passion for a usually male dominated game is to be commended. I look forward to watching them defend their title in next year's competition.