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National Volunteer Week

Mr WINGARD (Mitchell) (15:29): I rise today to speak about the Tennis SA awards event that was held just last week. Fittingly, I do so in National Volunteer Week because we know that all sporting clubs, and tennis in particular, are made up of wonderful volunteers, and a number of them were recognised on the night.

It was wonderful to be there with the president, Kent Thiele and CEO, Steve Baldas. It was a great night. People were there celebrating, and what they do running tennis clubs in the community is absolutely outstanding.

I have a number of tennis clubs in my local electorate, and I know how much the people involved give back, growing junior programs and the like. Some awards were given out on the night, and I would like to recognise some of the winners today. The award for the Most Outstanding School went to Prince Alfred College, one of the schools in contention.

Also nominated were Henley High School and Cobdogla Primary School, but PAC was the winning school. They do a marvellous job with their tennis program. For the Volunteer Achievement Award—City/Hills, congratulations to Sue Hutson from Littlehampton. She did a marvellous job with her club there. Again, in National Volunteer Week it is great to acknowledge them. The Volunteer Achievement Award—Rural went to Sonya Jensen from Normanville. She works tirelessly at that club, and it was great to see her accept her award on the evening.

The Most Outstanding 35+ Tennis Senior award went to Ron Russo from Tennis Seniors. Congratulations to him. The Most Outstanding Inclusion Program or Person award was quite close to me because, although they did not win, the Somerton Park Tennis Club has a blind tennis program, which is absolutely outstanding, and it is great to see them getting more people involved in tennis. Deputy Speaker, if you have ever tried to play blind tennis—and I have only watched; I have not had a go—I am told, and from what I saw, it is very, very difficult, so it is great to have that program in my local community.

The program that won was the Refugee Tennis Bridging Program, Grange Lawn. They had a wonderful video clip showing this, and I am sure that if you go to the Tennis SA website you can see this clip. This was a great group of people putting on an outstanding program. It is wonderful to see the volunteers involved with this, and what it gives back to the community through that program is absolutely sensational.

The Most Outstanding Athlete with a Disability award went to Sam von Einem from Henley South. The Coaching Excellence—Club award went to Helen Rice from Denman, which is in Colonel Light Gardens. We know that coaches do a lot of work and put in a lot of volunteer hours as well. The Coaching Excellence—Talent Development award went to Sam Wall from Coromandel Valley.

The Most Outstanding Tennis Club—Rural award for the night went to Two Wells. They were very happy with that. They have done a marvellous job in growing their club. They were almost extinct, literally, a few years ago, their numbers were so low. However, the people there, who were very excited on the night, and deservingly so, have done a marvellous job turning around the club, and now they are very, very strong in Two Wells.

The Most Outstanding Tennis Club—City award, in which Somerton Park was again in the running, went to Golden Grove. They have won it a few times, and they were very happy of course to take out that award. It was fantastic to acknowledge all the people involved with tennis in our local community. They are full of volunteers, which is wonderful.

Closer to home for me, there are a number of tennis clubs in and around my community. I would like to acknowledge the people who lead the charge and all the volunteers at these clubs. Right through, from the juniors to the seniors, they do a fantastic job keeping people fit and healthy.

We know South Australia has a great tradition of producing wonderful tennis stars, too. We bat well above our weight when it comes to producing tennis stars. There are names like Hewitt, Woodford, Molik and emerging now is Kokkinakis, so South Australia should be very proud of its tennis heritage.

The president of the Morphettville Tennis Club is Adrian Couzner. They do a great job. Paul Starrs is president of the Seacliff Tennis Club. I would like to acknowledge Rick Davey, the president of the Marion Tennis Club. He has done a power of work to get that club firing of late. Mark Flynn, Andrew Selman and Kathy Scotford are the president, vice president and secretary of the Warradale Tennis Club. I have worked very closely with them, and they have a great club that is coming on in leaps and bounds.

Paul Hodgson is the president of the Dover Square Tennis Club; in fact, that was the club I played at when I was a junior. I was coached by Jack Lynch, who did all he did to help out my tennis game. I greatly appreciate my time there is a junior. Adrian Dezen is the president of the Southbank Tennis Club. Graeme Greene also does a great job at Reynella.

Rob Hill, Bob Fairhead, Lynton Goldsworthy and Trevor Mills are part of the team that runs the Brighton Tennis Club. Trevor is the father of a friend of mine from when I was growing up, and I know how much he puts back into his community. Those are just some of the clubs in my local area. They do a great job in keeping kids active, keeping people healthy.

I look forward to working with them and the local councils in the future to make sure that we utilise, maximise and enhance the facilities we have to keep people playing this great game.

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