Brilliance from Bates duo

BY ALEX TIGANI

Could you have asked for a better send off?

Applause echoed across Bateau Bay when AFL Northern NSW general manager Simon Smyth announced Kalani Bates as the best on ground medallist of the grand final.

The talented teen was the pick of the umpires and starred with two goals in the opening term.

Her recognition capped of a brilliant year which saw her win the league’s Coaches Award, Rising Star Award as well as her club’s leading goal-kicker award (28).

However, she was not the only Bates family member to feature in the best players.

Her mother Paula also had a game to remember across half back and the midfield for the line-up. The dynamic duo will now return to South Australia.

“This (club) is our community,” Paula proudly declared.

“It is who you keep in contact within the pre-season, it is the people that support us through the good times and bad.

“They are loving, supportive, friendly and kind and we loved finishing with a win for the club.”