Melbourne Vixens co-captain Liz Watson was awarded the inaugural Edith Hull Medal on Saturday night in the Anzac Round match against Adelaide Thunderbirds.
A new initiative from Netball Victoria in 2022, the medal is awarded to the player who best exemplifies the Anzac qualities of endurance, courage, ingenuity, good humour and mateship in the Vixens’ Anzac Round fixture.
The medal has been created to recognise and highlight the contribution of an individual from our netball community who served during the war years.
Edith Probyn Hull (1909-1995) is a distinguished individual in the history of Victorian netball, and was a significant contributor to the war effort through her association with the Australian Women’s Land Army (AWLA) in the Second World War.
Edith played representative basketball (later known as netball) for Melbourne and Victoria between 1926 and 1932, eventually becoming the coach and manager of the state team from 1934 and president of the Victorian Women’s Basket Ball Association in the 1930s.
She helped to instigate the first international match to be played in Australia in 1938 between Australia and New Zealand, establishing an enduring legacy of connection and respect between the teams that continues today.
Edith was awarded the All Australian Service Award by the National Netball Association in 1959, and was posthumously inducted into the Netball Victoria Hall of Fame in 1998. The heritage collection at the State Netball Centre in Parkville is named in her honour.
She joined the AWLA in 1942 and became a strong voice and contributor, recruiting many women to serve. The Land Army was formed to combat the rising labour shortages in the farming sector and boost food production, and Edith was instrumental in promoting the AWLA efforts.
Prior to the club’s formation the Vixens’ two predecessor clubs, the Melbourne Phoenix and Melbourne Kestrels, traditionally played off during the Anzac Round. The creation of the Edith Hull Medal will honour that history into the future, as it will be awarded each time the Vixens host an Anzac Round match.
Watch the video below to learn more about Edith Hull