Raiders Mal Meninga Medal Gala Presentation DinnerShare Event on Facebook Share Event on Twitter Share Event on LinkedIn
“I promise you we will achieve success” was the entirely believable assertion by Raiders coach Ricky Stuart to the 700 strong guests at the annual gala dinner presentation of the Meninga Medal. And we so want it to happen. Sooner rather than later too as the glory days of the Raiders and the community support that it engendered fades with the years and the many so close finishes in this year’s games left us bereft.
Whatever this season’s finish is seen to be in the scheme of things you get the feeling that Ricky Stuart knows just what he’s doing, his team has his respect and they all have the support from the Patron to the Chairman and on through the club, and more importantly from the sponsors and the fans.
Which brings me to something that needs to be rectified with the Raiders. It’s a blokes club. And it needs more women on the board. The mothers, partners, wives and girlfriends are the backbone of support for the players, so choose someone from among them. Then look to your sponsors and one person is a standout as a 24 year veteran of continuing support and she deserves to be on the board. In the wide world of sport the winds of change have grown from a gentle zephyr to a growing storm of derision for organisations that continue to be gender biased in whatever form that takes. Time to make those changes to be seen as an inclusive club at all levels.
And while this is not my first Raiders Gala Dinner presentation it was significant for its much more stylish and classy décor making the AIS Arena into an intimate dinner venue with the bonus decoration the glam girls who sashayed around the room in stunning frocks, perfectly poised and coiffed and making a big impression when they finally got to the dance floor.
Impressive too was new mum Brodee Redman whose baby boy Kobee-John is just three months old and this was her first night out since his birth with fiancé Frank-Paul Nuuausala. She chose a stunning white lace dress worth thousands and hired for a moderate amount from Sydney Fashion Hire. Now that’s the way to do it. And not surprisingly among the fab frocks were some already seen at this year’s Mid-Winter Ball. In my opinion this bevy of beauties looked the best and to concur with that was the always charming Don Furner who agreed this is the most beautiful bunch of Raiders ladies ever.
The business of the night was the presentations with Mal Meninga in town for some new television commercials for his legal firm of choice and taking the chance to catch up with buddies at a local Italian eatery and making quite a night of it before presenting Sia Soliola with the Mal Meninga Medal. And the only hiccup for Soliola was being handed a glass of bubbly to toast with, but he doesn’t drink.