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  • Writer's pictureQBN Tigers Club

There’s nowhere to hide in a pink camouflage design jumper

Reserve Grade Playing Coach Alex Lawder controls the bench in his pink camo jumper.

Pink camouflage jumpers, pink balloons and a smattering of Australian Defence Force uniforms at Allinsure Park highlighted the first Queanbeyan Tigers Salute to Service round on 18 June – where our players, officials and supporters saluted women in football and the efforts and sacrifices made by Australian Defence Force service men and women.

The Queanbeyan Tigers have been a proud leader in this area with the Tigers fielding a Women’s team since 2010, appointing a the first female NEAFL assistant coach (Bec Goddard) and providing players in the inaugural AFLW match – Hannah Dunn and Ella Ross who represented the GWS Giants in the historic first AFLW game.

As part of the activities on the day, Captain Alexandra McDonald (an officer in the Australian Army Armoured Corps), Corporal Jeff Langdon (an Australian Army Physical Training Instructor who has worked extensively with Australian Defence Force Football) and Warrant Officer Chris Clifton (who is well known as the Tigers Rising Stars coach and has over 20 years of service) gave pre-game addresses to the Women’s, Reserves and Seniors teams respectively.

Each focussed on the values of the Australian Defence Force, the concepts of team work and sacrifice, and the importance of believing in yourself and buying into team values and culture.

Captain Alexandra McDonald talking with Women’s Team Manager Joan Vosnakes at the quarter time huddle.

All spoke about the challenges of deployed service and the pride in serving in the Australian Defence Force.

At the request of the coaches, Captain McDonald, Corporal Langdon and Warrant Officer Clifton presented the players with their unique camouflaged jumper prior to the game – adding another special moment for the proud Tigers players.

The Australian Defence Force was well represented on the day amongst the Tigers volunteers with Reserve Grade Match Day Assistant Damian Williams, First Grade Runner Jeremy Quade and Chaplain Scott Minchin currently serving Australian Defence Force members. Since 2012 Tigers volunteers have deployed to Afghanistan, Israel, the Middle East, the Northern Sinai, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands on operations.

Warrant Office Chris Clifton addresses the First Grade team.

Whether it was the occasion, or the inspiring speeches or the pride in a jumper that saluted our service people and women in football the Tigers delivered – with three great wins (following a Saturday victory by the Rising Stars) highlighting an amazing day. Co-Captain Josh Bryce remarking in his post-game speech that he felt ‘proud to be able to salute our service people who have given so much – it’s a proud moment for a proud club’.

And in a sign that community footy is making its way back (perhaps towards the halcyon days of the early 80’s eventually) a couple of junior Tigers who had made their Tigers debuts the day before met the players as they came off the ground to get the AFL Canberra Footy Record autographed.

The vibe of the Tigers Club that night befitted the great day – great participation, great atmosphere and great numbers – with plenty of reflections not only on the on-field success but of a day when the Tigers demonstrated their focus as a community club – saluting our members who have shown their support for the club and the community.

There’s a huge number of actions shots of players in the pink camo jumper in various galleries on our Facebook page (@QTAFC) and a selection below.

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