WHILE partying is the top priority for most 20-somethings visiting Yamba this week, brother and sister sporting dynamos Joanne and John Sutton have their sights firmly set on sporting success in 2010.
Strong family and sporting ties for the Suttons in the Clarence Valley gave the pair the perfect opportunity for an end-of-year catch-up in Yamba, six years after their last visit.
John, a five-eighth in his seventh year with the South Sydney Rabbitohs, was taking in his last chance to relax before training fires up again on Monday.
“I’ve just had an operation on my neck, so I haven’t been able to surf up here, which is a shame,” he said.
He won the George Piggins’ Medal as best and fairest at the Rabbitohs in 2009 and has developed both his attacking and defensive games to become one of the game’s most potent strike weapons.
His younger sister Joanne plays netball with the Adelaide Thunderbirds and was part of the Australian under-21 squad for four years running.
She’s keeping away from drinking these holidays and is opting rather for runs on the beach to prepare herself for the Australian team’s camp this month that may see her gain a spot in the squad bound for this year’s Commonwealth Games in India. She is also studying for a degree in Biological Science.
In a relaxed family catch up at the Yamba Shores Tavern this week, John and Joanne both said it’s their parents that have got them to where they both are today.
Elena and John Snr say that they ‘saw the talent’ in their kids and gave them all the encouragement they could. “It kept them off the streets,” Elena said.
John said: “I’m extremely lucky to have a dad that travels with me wherever I play.”