Sports Hall of Fame Inductee
Category: Sports Honour Roll
The sport of softball has been prominent in Shepparton for many years and was enjoyed by hundreds of girls as they grew up in the City. One such girl, Noela Laws grew up in Nathalia but moved to Shepparton as a 14 year old in 1956. She was a natural sport, was a good swimmer and won a G.V. Swimming Championship. She also played Tennis, but one day after breaking her tennis racquet on the tennis court she was enticed to try softball with the Shepparton Ramblers. Noela took to the sport immediately and showed great ability.
She was so keen that she travelled to Melbourne each winter from 1958 to 1965 to play in the Melbourne Softball Association and received specialist coaching. In 1959 she was invited to trial for the Victorian Softball team and in 1962 won selection in the Victorian team and played for her State in the Australian Championships in Adelaide. Victoria won the Australian title that year. Noela repeated that feat in 1965 and very proudly has two National titles to look back on.
Following her State representation, Noela continued her participation in Shepparton Softball, passing on the knowledge of the sport she gained as a state representative. She played in the senior competition with Dodgers and coached both the under 14 and under 17 teams.
During the winter Noela played netball in the Shepparton Netball Association and coached 3 premiership teams. She later played and coached netball in Congupna, winning three premierships.
Noela showed that with persistence and the willingness to travel and gain coaching support that representing your state is something that can be achieved. Noela is now welcomed as a roll of honour member of the City of Greater Shepparton Sports Hall of Fame.