Five straight for Han­nah

Han­nah Grady claims fifth-straight club best and fairest

Wangaratta Chronicle - - Front Page - BY CAM POT­TER cpot­ter@ ne­me­dia.com.au

FIVE best and fairests in a ca­reer is some­thing any sportsper­son would like to be able to rest their hat on at the end of a ca­reer.

Five best and fairests be­fore the age of 23 is a mon­u­men­tal achieve­ment and five best and fairests in a row, in­clud­ing in a premier­ship year well and truly has Han­nah Grady on track for an Ovens and Mur­ray hall of fame in­duc­tion once her ca­reer is over.

Wan­garatta Mag­pies’ A grade 2018 sea­son will be re­mem­bered as the year the team won its first Ovens and Mur­ray A grade premier­ship, and it will also go down in his­tory as the year that Grady won a fifth con­sec­u­tive best and fairest.

Grady’s role in de­fence, cou­pled with run­ner up and pre- mier­ship cap­tain Katie Dean’s poise and nous has al­lowed the Mag­pie to set­tle their de­fence at crit­i­cal times through games and hold op­pos­ing teams out.

The one-two fin­ish of the Mag­pies’ de­fend­ers just goes to show their im­por­tance in the team.

While Dean locks the cir­cle and her goal shooter down and uses her reach to de­flect many passes, it is Grady’s abil­ity to read the play and at­tack the ball, back­ing her ath­leti­cism in to beat her op­po­nent and then help re­bound down the court.

“It is a real priv­i­lege to win some­thing like this at club level, be­cause not only does it make you feel part of the club; you feel a part of the team and just ev­ery­thing,” Grady said.

“It is a lit­tle awk­ward to win this year.”

Grady, by her own ad­mis­sion, be­lieved she had a slow start to the sea­son, but still man­aged to lead by three votes, 23-20, over Katie Dean af­ter round nine.

“I thought I had had a pretty or­di­nary first half of the year and I said to my­self that I had to pull my fin­ger out,” she said.

“I was pretty as­ton­ished with how I fin­ished; I am pretty chuffed that I’ve man­aged to turn it around like I did.”

Grady fin­ished run­ner up in the Ovens and Mur­ray league count, the Ovens and Mur­ray League’s Toni Wil­son Medal fin­ish­ing just be­hind Corowa’s So­phie Han­ra­han.

In the other grades, B grade premier­ship hero Olivia Richards walked away with the best and fairest ahead of pre­lim­i­nary fi­nal star Shel Petts.

Richards said in her speech that while both her self and brother Joe had won best and fairest awards that hers trumped his due to win­ning a premier­ship, in a light-hearted jab on Fri­day night.

Molly Bate was named the C grade best and fairest with Casey Brown the run­ner up with both play­ers en­joy­ing great sea­sons at ei­ther end of the court.

Ebony Nor­ris’ awe­some un­der 16 cam­paign was re­warded with the best and fairest with Imo­gen Tay­lor the run­ner up.

WIN­NERS: Han­nah Grady (left) and Olivia Richards were named A and B grade netball win­ners at Wan­garatta on Fri­day night.

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