Irene's story: Netball - by Irene Cardall

I grew up on Bentilee, a large newly built housing estate in a very loving but poor family. When I was 10 I passed my eleven plus and went to an all-girls grammar school. What an eye opener. To me, then, there seemed so many new opportunities. I'd always been a stocky build but I loved all the various activities on offer and surprisingly seemed to excel at a few. I remember winning a gold medal for shot putting at Cobridge sports stadium in an inter school competition. I still remember how shocked and thrilled I was. Always being quite shy I don't think I ever expected much of myself. 

My favourite sport was netball and I played goal attack in the school team. I especially enjoyed the away trips and seeing the different schools. We had a blow-up giraffe as a mascot and kept it under the goal post. Those goal posts were really heavy and we had to carry them out to the courts. One day I dropped it on my foot. I was surprised not to break it as it was very painful.
From the first speech day I attended when the school netball captain was announced I had hoped it would be my position when the time came. Sadly I was chosen as Deputy Head Girl which put paid to that dream.

I continued to play netball until just before I had my children in my early thirties and my daughter also went on to play goal attack for her school. I’m just waiting now to see if my granddaughter will continue the tradition.

These days (my sixties) I enjoy walking and swimming but would be open to the possibility of an over sixties netball team. Nebulisers and oxygen at the ready!