In exciting times for Mackay and basketball in this city, the Opals will train at the McDonald’s Multi-Sports Stadium in the lead-up to the Games.
The training camp, from April 1 to 3, will provide an ideal environment for the Opals to prepare for Commonwealth Games success.
New Opals coach and Mackay local Sandy Brondello said her home town was an ideal location for the Opals’ preparation.
“Being close to our first playing venue (Townsville) and being in a welcoming basketball town, Mackay will be a crucial part of the Opals’ preparation for success,” she said.
“I am personally very excited to be coming home to prepare the Opals team and include my home town in the Opals’ success.”
Mackay Regional Council helped secure the Opals training camp through its Invest Mackay Events Attraction Program.
Acting Mayor Amanda Camm said one of the aims of the program was attracting events to Mackay that helped raise the profile of the region.
“Having one of Australia’s top teams choosing Mackay as a training base in the lead-up to the Commonwealth Games provides fantastic exposure for our city,’’ Cr Camm said.
“There will be plenty of national and international media interest in the Opals’ preparations for the Games,’’ she said.
Basketball Australia CEO, Anthony Moore, said: “Basketball Australia is very grateful for the generous support from the Mackay council to support the Opals and provide the perfect training environment for the Opals.
“Basketball Queensland is one of the leading state sporting associations in the country and we are appreciative of the support of the local Mackay Basketball Association as we all work together to promote our great game.”
Mackay Basketball general manager Jason Borg said having the Opals here would be one of the most exciting events in the organisation’s history.
“It is made even more special by our only Hall of Fame inductee Sandy Brondello being the head coach,’’ he said.
“It is a major coup for the Mackay district, having a national team use our facilities for a pre-Commonwealth Games camp.”
After the preparation camp in Mackay, the Opals will travel to Townsville for the initial Commonwealth Games rounds and then on to the Gold Coast for finals.