Melva Hancock (nee Saunders)

Melva commenced playing basketball in 1949 and had a long and decorated career in all facets of the sport. She represented the Newcastle Amateur Basketball Association (ABA) over 15 years. Melva felt very comfortable in her surroundings and sensed right at home.
Melva made history by becoming the first secretary of the ABA’s Women’s Council, established in 1955. For a decade, Melva was the face of the Women’s Council as both Secretary and Treasurer.
As such a big part of the game, Melva focused her skills and talents towards managing the first NSW Women’s team to participate in the 1955 Australian Women’s Championships. She did so again in 1956, 1960 and 1962.
Melva could also take to the floor and run the show. She managed and played in the Australian Women’s team that participated in the 2nd World Women’s Championships in Brazil in 1957.
Melva had the knowledge to run Associations and when it came to organising the Australian Women’s Championships, she did just that when the event was held in Newcastle in 1961.
Melva was involved in the media and promoted women’s basketball between 1958 and 1971. She was a strong believer in making the women’s game even bigger and became an advocate for women players to play International Rule’s basketball.
She went back to her roots and became an administrator at Newcastle ABA from 1973 until 1978.

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