Posts by: ACE

A Job Morwell Done


From the gleaming green turf of the synthetic oval at the western edge to the blue hue of new netball courts in the east, the Morwell Recreation Reserve has undergone a transcendent transformation. 

Throw in the reborn Keegan Street Reserve – upgraded to a level two cricket facility and re-opened in March 2021 – and you have a multisport complex the envy of any across Victoria. 

A $9 million renovation – funded by the federal and state governments – has all but been completed at the historic Gippsland site, and Tiger Town is abuzz. 

“We’ve been using it as a point of difference. We use it as part of our business case. The facilities are best by far for football and netball going around,” Morwell Football Netball Club President Paul Spagnolo said. 

As the finishing touches are applied, the scope of transmutation draws sharply into focus. 

Where once weary asphalt welcomed visitors by the Travers Street entrance, now stands a vibrant and enticing court complex, complete with a shared pavilion for cricket and netball. 

A tired former caravan park site forsaken by travellers and time alike has found new life as a full-size synthetic field compatible with sports of all varieties in all weather conditions.

Keegan Street Reserve is a breath of fresh air after being re-aligned with new wicket blocks, practice nets and improved drainage.

Lighting upgrades have put excellence back in the spotlight, literally and figuratively, as Morwell hangs its hat on a truly world class precinct. 

“We focus in on the Morwell Rec Reserve being the centre of excellence for AFL in the region,” Spagnolo said.

“No doubt it’s helped bring AFL games; we had the Collingwood St Kilda and the Hawthorn St Kilda games (in 2020) and we hope for many more of those to come our way in the future.” 

A wet and wild 2020 winter proved the worth of the synthetic addition to the ground – used ‘flat out’ by the club and TAC Cup neighbours Gippsland Power before COVID disrupted their seasons. 

“They love it… the surface is great, the lighting is excellent and they really appreciate it – it caps off being the best facility in the area,” Spagnolo said. 

“It’s a game changer for us. We would get chased off the main oval (due to wet weather), if we were playing this year it would be quite challenging being so wet. For us now we can change it around and reduce the load.”

As warmer months approach and, hopefully, a pandemic subsides, the Morwell Recreation Reserve is set and ready to enjoy a long stint in the sun. 

The $9 million Morwell Recreation Reserve project was co-funded by the federal and state governments.

‘It’s All Happening’ at the Moe Cricket Ground


The Moe Cricket Ground shares more than just an acronym with its famous Melbourne counterpart when it comes to sporting brilliance.

Ted Summerton Reserve (TSR) is now home to the $3.5 million Gippsland Regional Cricket Centre (GRCC), setting a new standard for regional cricketing facilities.

Cricket Victoria Chief Executive Andrew Ingleton attended the opening ceremony and was bowled over by the quality of the site.

“What a fantastic day for Moe and the wider Latrobe Valley. This new $3.5 million facility will be a focal point for cricket in the region and help us continue to grow the game from the grassroots through to elite levels,” Mr Ingleton said.

“I’d like to thank the Victorian Government, Latrobe City Council and Cricket Australia for their support in delivering this major regional project.

“We look forward to supporting the local cricket community to develop the next generation of Latrobe Valley cricketers using this wonderful new facility.”

The state-of-the-art facility features:

• Five lanes of indoor synthetic training wickets with extended run ups
• 1000 Lux LED lighting
• Cutting edge training and coaching technology
• Enclosed outdoor turf training wickets with retractable netting and a storage facility
• An auxiliary building complete with a community meeting room
• Office and administration space
• Unisex change facilities and a first aid room.

The centre will have year-round multipurpose use across a host of indoor sports including futsal and other community activities. 

The project created local jobs with Gippsland based Langden Constructions leading the design and construct works, JJC Design heading design works and a range of local sub-contractors also engaged.

Ted Summerton Reserve has enjoyed the spotlight in recent years, hosting two fully fledged Melbourne Stars Big Bash League matches in partnership with the Latrobe Valley Authority and Latrobe City Council. 

The GRCC project was funded by the Victorian Government via $3 million from the Latrobe Valley Authority’s $85 million sports and community initiative and $500,000 from Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Community Cricket Program supported by Cricket Australia and Cricket Victoria.

Slam Dunk For Indoor Sports Stadium


The Gippsland Regional Indoor Sports Stadium (GRISS) is open for business following a $19 million redevelopment at Catterick Crescent in Traralgon.

Hawthorn Netball Club, Melbourne Boomers, Collingwood Netball Club and the National Basketball League’s 3×3 format have all committed to GRISS appearances in a big coup for Latrobe City’s burgeoning sports and events precinct.

There was plenty of star power at the 17 December 2020 official opening, with Collingwood and England international netball superstar Geva Mentor in attendance, plus video messages from the Boomers and Collingwood. 

Collingwood netball legend Geva Mentor added some spark to opening day.

Elite and amateur athletes alike from across Gippsland and beyond will benefit from increased offerings at the venue, with community user groups and sporting clubs already taking to the courts.

The redeveloped centre now features nine courts, a show court with 3000 spectator seats, office and meeting space, conference rooms, café, social spaces and caters to a broad spectrum of indoor sports, shows and events.

“Everything’s been extremely positive; it’s a great space,” Traralgon Amateur Basketball Association Secretary Jeff White said.

“To have access to nine basketball courts in regional Victoria is an outstanding achievement for Latrobe City and the region.

“It’s only going to help grow and develop our sport especially but also other sports that use the facility.”

A 12-month construction cycle provided an economic boost for Latrobe City, with a host of local contractors engaged throughout the build. 

Gippsland businesses MSD Painting, Morrow Plumbing, Platinum Electricians, WELDTEK, CME Installations, Cornwall Building, Carpet Country, MTS Excavations and Drilling, J.O Miller and M&JM Cook, among others, were all engaged by lead contractor Becon Constructions on the project.

Unity: Local user groups joined with Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing (front right) and Latrobe City Mayor Sharon Gibson (fifth from right) to officially open the GRISS.

Latrobe City Mayor Sharon Gibson lauded the new-look centre and its implications for future generations of young athletes and event attraction.

“Latrobe City Council is thrilled to deliver this world-class indoor sports stadium for the benefit of all across our patch. Locals, visitors and elite athletes alike will enjoy these facilities, which will attract major tourism and big dollars into our economy for generations to come,” Cr Gibson said.

“This project is a testament to the State Government’s support for Latrobe City and we applaud their vision for local infrastructure upgrades to enhance our region’s clout as a major sporting and events precinct.”

The project was funded by $17 million from the Victorian Government’s $85 million Latrobe Valley Sports and Community Initiative, administered by Latrobe Valley Authority, and $2 million Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Community Sports Infrastructure Loan Scheme.

Take a virtual tour of the new Traralgon Sports Stadium with Latrobe City’s Larry Sengstock >