Bamawm-born international star Sharelle McMahon is among the Victorian netballers who've been named as candidates to be immortalised as statues.
McMahon, Joyce Brown, Lisa Alexander, Simone McKinnis and Norma Plummer have been proposed as potential athletes to be celebrated in statue-form outside Melbourne's John Cain Arena.
McMahon's star-studded career included two world championships, dual Commonwealth Games gold medals, a swag of domestic honours and is currently assistant coach at the Melbourne Vixens.
On International Women's Day Netball Victoria started a campaign to put a spotlight on the disparity that exists between the representation of female athletes as public monuments.
The are currently 35 sporting-icon statues throughout Melbourne, 29 of which are men, three are women and the rest belong to the equine world.
Currently the three statues of women are Olympians Shirley Strickland and Betty Cuthbert, in addition to the latest of AFLW player Tayla Harris.
However, with support from the state government, Netball Victoria is determined to see this change.
"I was kind of shocked at the low number of statues of Victorian sportswomen," McMahon said.
"This has been a real campaign by Netball Victoria and Rosie King (CEO) to bring this to the community's attention with the goal of balancing it out.
"Netball, from my perspective, is predominantly a female sport and to have people involved within our sport that are pushing for these kinds of acknowledgements really does make me quite proud."
Netball Victoria's Rosie King was pleased to have support of the state government and was eager to see the campaign get off the ground.
"Our incredible sportswomen have inspired us over generations to get involved in sport and recreation, however there is a lack of visible symbols across Melbourne that honours our female sporting icons," King said to Netball Australia.
"Statues and sculptures may be silent, but they speak volumes through symbolism.
King said NV was thrilled with the state government's commitment to "help level the playing field when it comes to honouring the legends of the sport".
McMahon was thrilled and honoured to be named as a proposed athlete for the netball statues.
"To see my name alongside the other candidates truly is an honour in itself," she said.
"I've been involved with our sport in Victoria for quite some time now and these players are not just some of the state's best, but the biggest in our entire country.
"There's been some big steps and plenty of work undertaken by Rosie and Netball Victoria to build support for this project and the fact it's now happening is great."
McMahon was also pleased to see players, especially from regional areas, have greater opportunities to be able to take their ability to an elite level.
"I grew up in Bamawm and the pathways are far more visible than when I was younger," she said.
"There are still certain areas that can be improved, but I am proud of the fact that no matter where players are there is access to pathways that will support their dream of taking their netball to the highest level."
In addition to grassroots netball, the Commonwealth Games star said exposure had also improved at a professional level.
"At the complete opposite end of the scale there is so much great exposure and support for our national Suncorp Super Netball league," McMahon said.
"This is massive for young females growing up to know there's fantastic opportunities to aspire to and achieve.
"Netball is far more visible than when I was growing up, I never saw anyone on television playing netball at an elite level."
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