The organisation copped backlash after allowing an all-male netball team to compete against girls, with online comments describing it a “terrible decision”.
The Queensland Suns’ all-boys team smashed the Bond University Bull Sharks 46-12 in the final at Brisbane’s Nissan Arena, with the boys’ coach reportedly copping abuse from the fans on the sidelines.
“The abuse ranged from comments made courtside deliberately within earshot of the Suns contingent, to adults making vulgar comments directly behind the team bench,” Suns coach Tammy Holcroft told the Courier Mail.
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“It’s disappointing that the frustration was directed at the players.
“At the very core of this, our boys just want to play and they copped the brunt of these comments and behaviours and were made to feel unwelcomed and unsupported.
“Our priority, as always, is the welfare of our players and we will continue to support them in everything they do.”
Social media users took to Twitter to express the organisation’s behaviour as “unfair” for both the males and their female counterparts.
“Sincerely hope that the treatment of the Queensland Suns boys over the last few days doesn’t in any way have negative impact on others who wish to play the sport,” one person tweeted.
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“So unfair, both for the girls and the guys at Suns, talk about lose-lose and Netball Queensland had to know this.”
“Terrible decision on your part to think this was going to be ok,” another wrote.
The Suns released its own statement following the controversy, acknowledging that while there are “perceptions of disadvantage”, it “in no way justifies the abuse, intimidation experienced”.
“Queensland Suns acknowledges the perceptions of disadvantage or unfairness for the girls regional teams, however the purpose of the opportunity afforded to us was not to overshadow them, but to provide some much-needed exposure on a significant stage,” the letter read.
“We acknowledge this has caused controversy, but it in no way justifies the abuse, intimidation experienced by our players and officials. 
“No athlete, in any sport, should be subjected to this behaviour for any reason.”
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