Sports Stars 1, 2, 3 & 4: Se-Bom Lee, Nalyn Sirivivatnanon, Ruby Worrell & Zac Sheerin

Recognition for Olympic swimmer Se-Bom Lee, netballer Nalyn Sirivivatnanon, track and field’s Ruby Worrell and touch footballer, Zac Sheerin.

By Anthony Stavrinos*

AUSTRALIAN Olympian Se-Bom Lee, track and field athlete Ruby Worrell, netball representative player Nalyn Sirivivatnanon and touch footballer Zac Sheerin are the first four monthly winners in the 2021-22 TWT Club Six/Ryde Sports Foundation Sports Star of the Year Award.

SE-BOM LEE was one of Australian swimming’s real success stories of 2021, recovering from a debilitating and at times, career-threatening shoulder injury to qualify for last year’s delayed Tokyo 2020 swimming in arguably swimming’s toughest event, the Men’s 400m Individual Medley.

Lee admitted he didn’t really expect to make the team after Covid lockdowns and his shoulder injury.

One of the stars of Australia’s Age Group program, winning three gold medals at the 2019 National Age, qualifying for the 2019 World Junior Championships, Lee and coach Misha Payne pulled off quite a remarkable performance.

He is the latest example of the swimming talent nurtured through Carlile Swimming, which provides competitive swimming coaching services – totalling around 850 lessons per week – to the Ryde community based out of the Ryde Aquatic Centre. 

Concord-based Lee registered a personal best time of 4:14.16 in the 2021 Australian Olympic trials to book a place in Tokyo for the 400m individual medley.

In Tokyo, Lee finished second in heat two of the with a time of 4:15.76

NALYN SIRIVIVATNANON first started playing netball in 1999 for the West Ryde Rovers Netball Club (WRR) where she played for many years, later leaving to join an All Abilities team in the Ku-ring-gai Netball Association competition.

But she returned to the Eastwood Ryde Netball Association (ERNA) fold in 2015 when WRR entered an All Abilities team into the ERNA mainstream competition. A year later, ERNA started its own All Abilities competition.

Nalyn loves her netball and preferred positions are Goal Shooter, Centre and Goal Attack. 

In 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2021 Nalyn was selected to represent Netball NSW, in the Marie Little Shield Team at the Nationals.  

She won gold in 2016, 2017 and 2018 and bronze in 2019.  

Unfortunately, no team was chosen for 2020 and due again to COVID the competition was cancelled in 2021 after the team was chosen and training had begun.

The Marie Little Shield (MLS) is a Netball Australia competition for women with an intellectual disability, giving these athletes the chance to represent their state at a national level.

ZAC SHEERIN’S representative touch football career started in 2012 when he played in the under-10s for the Ryde Eastwood Hawks and recently represented our Club in the under-18 boys division. This will be his 11th year playing for the club. 

Sheerin, who was nominated Club Captain last year and under-18b captain for the Junior State Cup team, completed Year 12 at St Ignatius Riverview last year.

He’s a committed member of the Ryde Eastwood Touch community who not only plays at an elite level but referees in the Monday night competition and plays in several teams that have won grand finals over the years.

Sheerin also participates in the Hawks Winter competition in several teams to continue honing his skills. He has played Vawdon Cup for the past three years and has been selected in the Sydney Scorpions representative program for the past two years.

Ryde Eastwood Hawks management say he is a team player who always gives 100 percent to his team and the club and is a quiet achiever on and off the field with speed to burn. 

He has also earned the respect of his fellow players, club members and coaches through his willingness to always give his best at training and during the season. 

Sheerin has now played his last JSC for the club and now looks forward to playing in the senior

Division with the Hawks’ senior coaching staff identifying him as a player who will make the transition into Premier League over the coming seasons.

“Zac has the world at his feet and will progress up the ranks rapidly if he continues to apply himself to training and to the Club,” Hawks Head Coach and Coaching Director Barry Gibson said.

RUBY WORRELL, who turned 15 last year, has been cutting her times down and working out just which is her best track and field event over the past three seasons. 

Worrell had a sensational 2020/21 season starting with a new NSW All Schools State record in the 14yrs 400m at the NSW All School Championships in December 2020, culminating in a gold  and silver medal at the Australian Track and Field Championships in April 2021.

In a sensational race at the 2020 NSW All Schools, Worrell tore the field apart in the first 100m and set a NSW All Schools record of 55.35s for 14yrs 400m in December 2020.

So good was this time it would have qualified Worrell to line up in the 2021 Australian Open Women’s 400m Championships against the likes of Olympians Bendere Oboya and Anneliese Rubie Renshaw. 

To  achieve an Open Qualifying time in sprints, at just 14 years of age is a huge achievement.  

This 400m time saw Ruby ranked No. 1 female in Australia in 2020 for U16 400m. 

Ruby was also ranked 15th in Australia in the U16 200m (25.36s) for 2020 and picked up a bronze at the 2020 NSW All Schools in the 200m in a time of 25.36s.  

As a result of her performances, Ruby was selected in the NSW All Schools team to compete at  the 2020 Australian All Schools Championships which were unfortunately not run due to Covid  restrictions.

In February 2021 Ruby won silver at the Athletics NSW State Championships in the U16 200m in  a time of 25.59s. 

Ruby followed this up in March when she competed at the NSW Little Athletics  State Championships and collected silver in the U15 400m and bronze in the 200m.  

At the Australian Athletics Track and Field Championships in April 2021 Ruby qualified to  represent NSW in the U16 200m and 400m and was also selected in the U16 NSW 4 x 200m  team. This was the third year running that Ruby has been selected in the NSW Track and Field  Championships team.  

In the 200m Ruby place 14th overall in Australia in a time of 25.85s. In the 400m Ruby finished just 0.27s off the gold medal when she stopped the clock at 56.66s to claim the silver medal.

At Saturday morning competition down at Dunbar Park, Ruby over the season set new Ryde Little Athletics records for the U15G in the 400m and 100m and a Ryde Senior’s Best Performance on  record for 14yrs 400m. 

With the 2021/22 season not yet started, Ruby has already run the 2021/22 Qualifying times for  the U17/U18 & U20 200m and U17/U18 and U20 400m for the 2022 Australian Championships in  Perth. 

* * *

DURING THE LAST Covid-interrupted 24 months, Ryde Sports Foundation (RSF) has been hamstrung with venue restrictions and general difficulties planning and organising its regular gatherings to announce and recognise its monthly Sports Stars.

RSF chair Rob Wilkinson said the 2021/2022 Sports Stars would all be presented at the May 6 Annual Awards Dinner, rather than the usual bi-monthly events.

“It’s been an unprecedented year of interruptions to everyday life, and I’m very proud of the manner in which the Ryde Sports Foundation has continued to fly the flag in 2020/21,” he said.

“Out of necessity, we have had to put all regular activities on hold.

“And now, with some light at the end of the tunnel, the challenge is there for us to take stock, and resume ‘normal transmission’ so we can get on with the job of celebrating sport in Ryde and recognising our sporting success stories.”

*Story courtesy The Weekly Times