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Glenys Nall (Beasley)

Born 12 February 1944. Attended Camberwell High School 1958-1961

Glenys Nall (Beasley), athlete and businesswoman, came to Camberwell High from Moonee Ponds Central School. Whilst at Camberwell she was house captain of McArthur in 1960-1.

Glenys first achieved athletic prominence in 1958 when, after winning at the inter-house sports, she won the girls’ under 15, 75 and 100 yards races in record time at the central division of the Metropolitan High Schools’ Sports Association carnival. She won both events again at the Combined High Schools’ Sports Championships. In 1959, now under 16, Glenys was again inter-house, central division and, with two new records (including one Victorian), All High Schools champion over 75 and 100 yds. Then, in ‘a polished display’ (Sporting Globe, 31 October 1958), she won the Victorian schoolgirls’ under 16 100 yds title in 11.7 sec. Coached by Jack Owen at Wattle Park, Glenys Beasley was now hailed as a ‘teenage sprinting star’ (The Sun, 31 October 1959).

Victory after victory followed and records tumbled. She repeated these 1959 successes in 1960 and, in addition, won the 220 yds. Still only 16, Glenys represented Victoria against NSW for the R H North Cup in Sydney, in January 1961. She finished second in the 100 yds, third in the 220 yds and was a member of the winning 440 yds relay team. In February she won the Victorian junior 100 yds championship in 11.4 sec and, ‘as she tried to achieve the impossible’ (Sporting Globe, 18 February 1961) – with only five minutes between events – came fifth in the senior final. ‘She would have gone close to winning had she been reasonably fresh’ (Herald, 22 February). Glenys was then second in the 100 metres and, in a ‘brilliant’ run (Herald, 4 March), she won the 220 yds in a fast 24.4 secs. Later that year Glenys again won the inter-house, central division and All High Schools championships over 75, 100 and 220 yds. The school’s proudest moment came when three Camberwell High sprinters, Glenys, Lois Barton and Joy Morton, finished first, second and third respectively in the open 100 yds final at the Victorian schoolgirls’ athletics championships in October. Glenys’s performances in 1961 earned her a Commonwealth World Sports plaque.

In January 1962, having just matriculated, Glenys won four Victorian sprint titles, after which she was described as ‘the greatest sprint prospect Victorian women’s athletics has produced’ (Sporting Globe, 17 January). Selected for the Victorian team, Glenys then won the Australian 100 yds title in Adelaide in ‘the sensational time’ (Sunday Mail, 27 January) of 10.5 sec, only 0.2 outside the Australian and World records. She scored ‘a runaway win’ (Age, 30 January) in the 220 yds, in 23.7 sec and was now ‘our best running prospect since Betty Cuthbert’ (Sydney Mirror, 1 February).

Soon after Glenys represented Australia at the Commonwealth Games in Perth, where she won a gold medal as a member of the winning 440 yds relay team, she gave up competitive athletics. She was a member of the Eastern Suburbs club. Since graduating BA (Deakin), 1980 and Dip.Ed (Melb Coll of Ed), 1981 Glenys has been a schoolteacher and is now a small business proprietor specialising in commercial report writing.