One of Australia’s greatest netballers, McMahon was joined by family, friends and former team mates on International Women’s Day to unveil the likeness of herself in a shooting action at its permanent location within the Melbourne & Olympic Parks Precinct.
McMahon’s impressive career spanned 25 years as a player and a coach, playing for the Melbourne Phoenix, Melbourne Vixens and Australian Diamonds. She represented the nation in 118 appearances, the second-most all time for the Australian team.
Originally from Bamawm in rural Victoria, McMahon dominated the court as a Goal Attack or Goal Shooter, picking up numerous individual and team accolades across her storied career.
This includes two gold and two silver Commonwealth Games medals, two netball World Cup wins, over 200 domestic netball games, and famously shooting the winning goal at the 1999 Netball World Cup over the Silver Ferns in New Zealand.
In recognition of her prolific netball legacy she was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 2016, and had the Melbourne Vixens Sharelle McMahon Medal name in her honour, which is awarded to the most valuable player each season.
McMahon herself stated that while she was growing up with ambitions to play elite-level netball, “she didn’t see many women in sport doing their thing,” and that, “this permanent spot is really important for our female athletes”.
The statue was created by internationally renowned Australian-based artists, Gillie and Marc Shattner, co-founders of Statues for Equality and is part of the state government’s Celebrating Female Sporting Icons initiative which aims to recognise female achievement in sport and to also balance the gender ratio on statues.
This initiative helps fund the Statues for Equality project, which includes the creation of a second statue of fellow Netball legend Anne Henderson, set to be unveiled at the redeveloped State Netball and Hockey Centre in Parkville in late 2023.
Photo: Sharelle McMahon (left), her father (John) and mother (Olive) stand next to McMahon’s statue