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Colombo complex open to all

Shyanne Aporo in action for Harcourts. PHOTO/JADE CVETKOV

NETBALL

JAKE BELESKI
[email protected]

It may still require some finishing touches but the Colombo Rd netball complex is well and truly up and running.

Some inclement weather meant the installation of the artificial turf on six of the courts had to be delayed until after this season, but most of the other features are already being utilised.

A quick tour of the facility shows exactly why the region is so lucky to have this $2.7 million facility in its backyard.

The state-of-the-art building has modern toilets, changing rooms, a medical room, offices and a cafeteria, and matches on the three covered courts can be viewed from the deck area surrounding the building.

If there happens to be a rugby match on at the Jeans St grounds across the road, that would also be viewable from the complex.

And that is the benefit of such a facility – it is not just netball that is set to reap the rewards, but other sports and community groups can also make the most of what it has to offer.

Facility manager Ces Newton said it was important it wasn’t seen as a place that would only be used by netballers.

“This really is a project that will benefit everyone in the wider community.

“There are so many options and we want to make sure it is always being used, and not left empty.”

She said netballers would be the primary beneficiary in winter, particularly while they were going through the learning process of how best to run the facility.

Six uncovered asphalt courts are open to the public at all hours, and the television-quality lighting above the covered courts means teams can train or play at night with no visibility issues, and there is the potential to bring in temporary stands if the facility hosts a match that draws a large crowd.

Eventually, nets from another sporting complex will be added, making indoor versions of sports such as cricket, netball or football a possibility.

The deck surrounding the building is lined with palings showing the names of people who have contributed to the fundraising cause, and palings can still be purchased from the Bring it to Colombo website.

Newton said she was thrilled to be able to work at such an advanced facility, and it is easy to see why.

Every sportsperson should get a buzz out of using the best facilities and equipment on offer, and that is something Wairarapa sportspeople can now do on a daily basis.

Earlier this year, Bring it to Colombo Trust chairman Luther Toloa said it was exciting for those in the community who could use the facilities.

“I think the community ought to be excited – it’s their facility.

“All we’re doing is just facilitating it for the community.”

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