Bamawm-born international netball star Sharelle McMahon will be immortalised in bronze as part of a state government project to celebrate female sporting icons.
A statue of McMahon will be erected outside the state's home of netball at John Cain Arena to showcase the 44-year-old's incredible career which includes 200 games and six premierships with Melbourne Phoenix and Vixens, in additions to 118 games for Australia's national team.
McMahon secured two Commonwealth Games Medals (1998, 2002) and captained the Australian Diamonds at 12 World Cups - winning two in the process (1999, 2007).
McMahon was elated to receive such prestigious recognition for her career.
"It's a wonderful individual accolade, but it's a real recognition of the sport of netball and the contribution that the sport of netball has made to Victoria," she said.
Netball Victoria northern region manager Pam Ferrari said McMahon was an icon for regional Victorian players and worthy recipient of the recognition.
"Sharelle is a great role model for aspiring netballers and she shows that you can come from country Victoria and make it big time," she said.
"It's vitally important that netballers, both girls and boys, from regional Victoria know that the pathway is open to everybody.
"Sharelle played in our North Central Regional squad at the 15-and-under level before she moved to Melbourne to pursue her career with Melbourne Phoenix and then the Vixens.
"From there she made several state teams before making a name for herself as an Australian Diamond."
Netball Victoria chief executive officer Rosie King, who has been a key driving force behind advocating for greater recognition of female athletes, reiterated the importance of McMahon's career to inspire the next generation of netballers.
"Whilst we can't rewrite history, we can ensure that the story of Australia's sporting landscape more accurately reflects the impact that women have," she said.
"Sharelle McMahon is an icon of our great game of netball.
"However, her statue isn't just about netball - it's about giving the community the chance to reflect on the legacy that women have created and will continue to create for generations to come.
"It's an important story to tell and Sharelle McMahon is the right person to tell it."
Read more: McMahon statue win for female athletes
After retiring from netball, McMahon moved into coaching as well as taking on other roles within sport - including her most recent appointment as head of female cricket for Cricket Victoria.
McMahon's statue, which is expected to come to life by the start of the 2023 season, will be the fifth woman and first Victorian to receive the honour alongside Olympians Betty Cuthbert, Shirley Strickland, Nova Peris and AFLW player Tayla Harris.
The announcement is part of the state government's Celebrating Female Sporting Icons and Statues for Equality project which has the broader aim to work towards balanced gender and racial representation through public statues.
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