About Us

The Deakin Melbourne Boomers are the oldest Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) club and the longest-running elite-level women’s sporting team in Australia (across all sports). The club began its journey in 1984 as the Bulleen Boomers, having been created by Bulleen-Templestowe Basketball Club (BTBC). The Boomers replaced “Bulleen” with “Melbourne” in 2013 to garner wider appeal and engage a city-wide fanbase, and later became the Deakin Melbourne Boomers in 2014 when Deakin University joined as a naming rights partner.

The ownership of the club remained untouched until 2016, when a new ownership group was formed to not only save the club during a time of financial turmoil, but to also elevate the brand in what was to become a new phase of the Deakin Melbourne Boomers.

The iconic Boomers brand is recognised both nationally and internationally, most notably for being home to more Olympians and Opals than any other basketball club in Australia, and for being a leader in the space of women’s sport.

The Boomers waiting 27 years to claim their first WNBL Championships (2010-11) and would have to toil for another decade before again tasting the ultimate success with Championship number two in 2021-22.

The club is currently guided by a clear vision which recognises its societal place and responsibility in the landscape of women’s sport, as well as its desire to achieve on the basketball court.

Our Purpose: We exist to make a difference for women through basketball.

Our Vision: Equality in Basketball.

Our Trademarks: We are Inspiring; We are United and Fearless; We are Professional and Accountable.

This purpose, and these trademarks, permeate all aspects of the Deakin Melbourne Boomers – from the athletes, coaches and high-performance staff right through to the ownership, management and front office. It is through these that we judge our success on and off the basketball court, and adamantly believe sustained success will result.

HISTORY – The Early Years

The Boomers were first coached by Trevor Cook, with the initial team including Michele Timms and Samantha Thornton, who both went on to represent Australia with distinction in future years. The club first qualified for the WNBL finals in 1989 under the guidance of coach Paul Deacon, and, after progressing to the same stage the following year, missed the playoffs until 1996. In coach Lori Chizik’s first season, Bulleen finished third in the regular season before bowing out in the semi-finals.

Chizik led the Boomers to the 1999-2000 preliminary final – the club’s best-ever result to that point. Cheryl Chambers then took over in 2001-02 and steered the club to two finals appearances, including the 2004-05 preliminary final.

The Boomers have called a variety of places home in their almost four-decade existence. Sheahan’s Road Basketball Centre, Keilor Basketball Stadium, the Melbourne Entertainment Centre, and the Veneto Club were all utilised as home venue before the Boomers made the bold move to relocate to the then newly built State Basketball Centre in 2014.

Since its inception, Bulleen was a club-based program. The club developed a semi-professional program with key players up until 2000, including some of the best to ever play the sport in this country. Names such as Debbie Slimmon, Samantha Russell, Karin Maar, Tammy Good, Gaylene McKay, and Cheryl Chambers all proudly wore the Boomers uniform, and were integral in building the foundation in which our thriving club and community now stands.

However, no one has had a bigger influence on the sport, or captured the hearts of Australian basketball fans, more than Michele Timms. Timms has long been recognised as the most talented female basketballer Australia has ever produced. As a three-time Olympian, four-time World Championship player, and Australian Captain, she represented Australia with distinction and was a pioneer for young female basketballers. She was the first Australian to play in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and also enjoyed a successful career in Europe.

Timms is commonly referred to as the Patron of the Boomers, and the club’s annual most valuable player (MVP) award is struck in her name.


In the early 2000’s, the likes of Katrina “Froggy” Hibbert and Hollie Grima formed the backbone of Boomers teams. Hibbert won back-to-back League MVP awards during the 2004-05 and 2005-06 season, while Grima followed up her World Championship gold medal with the Opals in 2006 by being crowned league MVP in 2006-07, before then going on to win silver at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

The torch was then passed onto club stalwarts Desiree Glaubitz and Sharin Milner, and a period of sustained success soon followed. Both Glaubitz and Milner have been recognised at the national and international level, with an Opals squad selection for Glaubitz and Milner winning the WNBL Golden Hands Award twice in 2003-04 and 2008-09.

The efforts of this duo resulted in a grand final appearance in 2009-10, and the addition of players such as Liz Cambage, Rachel Jarry and Jenna O’Hea proved to be the final pieces to the championship puzzle as the Boomers finally won their first WNBL title in March 2011. Glaubitz and Milner shared the captaincy responsibilities, and the enviable title of inaugural championship Head Coach went to legendary Australian coach Tom Maher. Maher was joined by a familiar name, with Michele Timms joining as his assistant.

Another Grand Final appearance followed in 2011-12, however the Boomers were unable to repeat the success of the previous season, and the program entered a period of decline and uncertainty.

2014 TO NOW

Seeing the need to expand the fan-base of the club, BTBC changed the name from “Bulleen” to “Melbourne” in 2014 to target a wider area and boost crowd numbers. The team also swapped blue for purple, moving away from the blue and gold of the previous 30 years, and elevated the already strong brand to an even higher level. The newly named Melbourne Boomers also took the step of relocated its home games to the State Basketball Centre, which was newly built and offered a larger capacity to accommodate the efforts resulting from the club’s rebrand.

In 2016, a change in direction from BTBC meant the Boomers WNBL licence was in jeopardy, and a push to find the club a new ownership group commenced. This resulted in the current group of owners taking the reins of the club – a group which remain to this day. The group shared a passion for women’s basketball and wanted to ensure the Boomers continue to grow as Australia’s most iconic women’s basketball team and brand.

Led by Head Coach Guy Molloy, and a talented roster of both experienced and emerging players, the Boomers returned to the finals in 2017-18 but fell just short in the Grand Final series against Townsville. In a ground-breaking season for Melbourne’s WNBL club, the Boomers recorded the highest crowds in the WNBL, including a season-best 3,655 on January 18, 2018.

The 2018-19 season again saw the Boomers reach the WNBL finals series, only to fall devastatingly short in the semi-finals against Adelaide. Despite missing out on the Grand Final, it was clear that the club was heading in a positive direction and was winning over the Melbourne sporting public, consistently drawing large crowds who flocked to the State Basketball Centre to enjoy an unrivalled atmosphere and fan experience.

2019-20 saw another heartbreaking Semi-Final series loss, this time to Canberra, however it was evident that the nuclease of the team was strong and poised for success, with players such as Cayla George, Lindsay Allen, and Ezi Magbegor ready to help add to the Boomers’ solitary championship.

The 2020 season was interrupted by the COVID pandemic, and a shortened “hub” season was played in Far North Queensland. George and Magbegor led the team and were joined by fan-favourite, Tess Madgen, who returned to the club having played with the Boomers in 2013-15. The team made its fourth successive finals appearance, but ultimately lost in a heartbreaking last-second preliminary final to the Townsville Fire.

In 2021, the redevelopment of the State Basketball Centre commenced, and as a result, the Boomers relocated their practice and playing base to Melbourne Sports Centres Parkville (next to Melbourne Zoo). The venue, affectionately known as The Boom Box to fans, has become the setting for the best gameday experience in the WNBL, and also offers players an elite training facility, with courts, gym, and recovery facilities all under one roof.

Heading into the 2021-22 season, returning players George, Magbegor and Madgen were joined by New Zealand national player, Penina Davidson, and local warrior, Izzy Wright. With Lindsay Allen returning from the US and bringing fellow import, Tiffany Mitchell, with her, the Boomers were set to make a strong run. The fairytale was realised on April 9, 2022 as the WNBL Championship trophy was hoisted proudly by these players, and Guy Molloy, who finally secured his first title after nine seasons of work brining the Deakin Melbourne Boomers back to the top.

For Molloy, however, this moment was bittersweet as it would be his last time as coach of the Boomers, having accepted a role in New Zealand which would see him depart following the conclusion of the season. This left a vacancy which was soon filled by Chris Lucas – a veteran of almost three decades who took the reins from Molloy and brought with him one of Australia’s most decorated players as assistant in Kristi Harrower.

Lucas and Harrower commenced their first season in 2022-23, however the club lost two championship players to Europe in Ezi Magbegor and Lindsay Allen. The return of Tiffany Mitchell, as well as the addition of Kristy Wallace, veteran Mia Murray, and young WNBA centre Olivia Nelson-Ododa, contributed to another successful season as the Boomers reached the WNBL Finals for a sixth consecutive time. Back-to-back titles were not to be, however, as the Boomers lost a nail-biting semi-final series to crosstown rivals, the Southside Flyers.

With the offseason came substantial change which saw Captain Cayla George depart, followed by Tess Madgen. Tiffany Mitchell also chose to pursue opportunities in Europe, and with the retirements of Mia Murray and Rachel Brewster, the Boomers were facing a new look for the 2023-24 season. However, with the return of Wallace and Davidson, as well as the additions of Opal, Sara Blicavs, and established WNBL talent, Keely Foling, the future is looking bright as the Boomers once again seek to reach the WNBL Finals for their seventh consecutive season.