There were record numbers of mums, dads and followers of our strong Pambula Panthers Football Club and Eden Football Club who all attended the Pambula Merimbula Golf Club for the combined annual presentation of awards last Saturday night.
The evening started with a strong contingent of Auskick young future footballers who all received an award from coordinator Glen Baker who has done a superb coaching job with our future youth.
Following these stars, we were all excited to see so many under 12s with their mums and dads all in attendance to see the awards and the excitement on these young players faces as they marched up proudly to be greeted by the coaching staff Tim Stewart and Ian McManas.
These guys assisted by others obtained a great result by playing grand final football and were beaten by a stronger team on the day.
We all were awaiting the big one of the evening – the winning under 14.5 Premiers for 2012. The very capable coaching staff lead by John Wenczel, who incidentally has won two premierships in a row, distributed the awards and spoke proudly of the effort these talented players gave to the Panther team and colours this year. Well done our Under 14.5s.
Our other grand final team was the U17s who performed gallantly and were also beaten by a stronger team on the day.
But they gave their all and walked away with heads high and will be much stronger by the experience of playing in a grand final (not many of us have achieved this standard in our lifetime).
Ricky Holt coached this team to his first grand final after many years of coaching at various levels and he spoke with admiration on how these young lads worked together to obtain such a great result.
Another highlight was the achievements of our combined reserves team who comprised a mixture of Pambula, Eden and Canberra players who all came together to reach the preliminary final. These combined guys had a great season together and formed a close tie with each other.
Our senior team were well represented by a strong showing of players with coach Jarrod Wallis distributing the awards. The big award for the evening went to Sean Smith, who won the Jim Sharples Best & Fairest shield for a club-record fourth time. Jim’s son Wayne (Crackers) presented the shield on behalf of the family.
Other highlights were the Life Memberships presented to volunteers, past players and life-time contributors to there respective clubs. Eden’s six life members were Heath Chester, Ian Merrington, Craig Turnbull, Shane Crowe, Shane O’Malley and Phil Caffie.
Pambula have their first female life member in Darleen Nelson, who has been around the club for years and is a worthy holder as are the Eden crew.