Are Mavis and Ross the oldest playing members in Australia?

Written by  Saturday, 16 July 2016 21:59

Last month two of our oldest Badminton Players ever recorded celebrated their 89th and 90th birthdays.


Meet Mrs Mavis Smith


She is an 89 years old mother of 13 children, 42 grandchildren and some 22 great grandchildren with more on the way.


Mavis was introduced to badminton in Darwin where she and a group of women met regularly to play social badminton at the Northern Territory Badminton Association Inc., 21 Albatross Street, Winnellie some 30 years ago whilst she and her husband Laurie were living at Anula. Mavis has a very competitive nature and on the court even her sons Timothy and Andrew, when in their twenties refused to challenge her to a game as she could wipe the badminton court with them.


When Laurie and Mavis retired and moved back to their home in Hamilton South, Newcastle some 18 years ago, Mavis located a badminton group and continued to play the game she loves. Many women have moved on over the years but Mavis has continued to be a regular Thursday player. Even when she had a gammy knee a couple of years ago, she defied her surgeon who refused to operate and told her to give up playing, Mavis bought a knee brace and has continued to play. She currently plays every Thursday morning at 1/16 Albert St, Wickham NSW 2293 home of the Hunter Badminton Association.


At present Mavis is recuperating from some surgery. Her questions to the surgeon has been how soon after surgery can she play badminton. She has had morning tea with the ladies when she’s not playing. Mavis has found this group to be a very vibrant and important part of her life, along with caring for her husband of some 69 years Laurie and enjoying the visits and company of her 13 children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.


Mavis is an excellent ambassador for the sport of Badminton.


Written by:
Mavis's 6th daughter
Louise Hunt


Meet Ross Mahaffey


Written by:
Tony Morgan

On the morning of Ross 90th birthday early June 2016


This morning I was lucky to attend the Monday morning social group.


As president it was very pleasing to witness first-hand the wonderful interactions and companionship of these 25-30 regular players.


The cold weather does not faze this group as they turn up in numbers...... Enjoying a game or two together with a cuppa & some baked goodies for morning tea, every week. (Also a common experience with our Thursday morning Ladies group each week)


However today I was also privileged to witness this group wishing one of our members a happy birthday.


Meet Ross Mahaffey (pictured with his wife Audrey) who turns 90yrs next week and his gold labelled racquet presented to him this morning.


Ross is very active on court and stills has all the tactics and a mean drop shot.... and whenever our club holds a big event/tournament you can bet Ross & Audrey will be there in the stands showing their club support and having a general love for the game.


Ross began playing badminton over 60 years ago in the 1950's in a New Lambton hall and also at the Newcastle Showgrounds.., which was the home of badminton in our region prior to our Wickham stadium being built (1980).


We also believe Ross has the honour of being the oldest registered badminton player in NSW.... I wonder if it's even a Australian honour ????


Ross is an inspiration for us all... please help me in wishing him a happy 90th birthday.


The Challenge is ON!!! If you think ‘the water is better in your State/Territory then join the conversation on Facebook, show us some pics!'





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