Sutherland Shire Football Association side Menai Hawks FC recently welcomed NSW Premier, Dominic Perrottet and Liberal Candidate for Holsworthy, Tina Ayyad to Buckle Reserve.
The Premier and Ms Aayad, committed $1.5 million to Buckle Reserve, home of the Menai Hawks under a re-elected NSW Liberal Nationals Government.
The $1.5 million will go towards a new hybrid surface with drainage and irrigation.
Hybrid pitches are a mixture of natural grass and synthetic grass in one system. The synthetic grass equates to between 5 to 10% of the total surface.
The Menai Hawks Football Club is a club with over 900 members (2022) and has seen growth of 13% since 2020.
The Hawks run an impressive summer football competition in Menai in addition to the regular winter football season. A new hybrid surface at Buckle Reserve will allow the club to run football all year round with confidence.
Hybrid surfaces can extend the use of natural grass fields by three times.
Improving the venue capacity of existing fields, is a key element of the NSW Football Infrastructure Strategy and a crucial element for clubs in the Sutherland Shire.
SSFA is the second largest association across NSW and Australia, with 1 in 11 people in the Sutherland Shire participating in football.
Female participation is soaring in the Sutherland, with 33% of all participants being females, which is well above the NSW average of 25%.
In 2022, 28% of Menai Hawks FC participants were female. This figure is expected to see an uplift as the FIFA Women’s World Cup hosted in Australia is just over 100 days away now.
Football NSW welcomes the $1.5 million commitment from the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government as a means of supporting the ongoing growth of community football in southern Sydney.
Football NSW continues to advocate to all side of politics for increased funding and support for our clubs and associations, ensuring inclusive and accessible facilities that can not only meet the current demand for football but cater for the ongoing growth of the game for generations to come.