The concept of having a Victorian Regional Academy of Sport (VRAS) based in Mildura was floated in 1996 with an interim Board of Management being established in 2001 which included representatives from the Mallee Sports Assembly, local sporting Associations and community members. The key objective of this committee was to assess the viability of having a VRAS in the region and to investigate funding avenues. The demand for the establishment of a VRAS in Mildura was highly apparent with support for the concept coming from Local Government, the region’s schooling sector and the sporting community.
The Sunraysia Academy of Sport was established to overcome the inherent problem of isolation and tyranny of distance faced by emerging young athletes in Sunraysia.
The Sunraysia Academy of Sport then commenced business in 2005 with the administrative headquarters being based at corporate level partner Sunraysia Murray Group Training (SMGT) offices, located in Eighth Street Mildura.
The SAS conducted its official launch on the 13th of September 2005 at the Mildura Function Centre.
Sunraysia Academy of Sport‚Äôs Inaugural Naming Rights Sponsor Mildura Finance Limited (MFL) was officially announced in November 2005 and remained until November 2008.¬† The Academy Board of Management would like to acknowledge the invaluable support MFL provided throughout their three year sponsorship of the Academy.
The honorary patron of the Sunraysia Academy of Sport is Matthew Knights. Matthew was born and raised in Merbein prior to having a distinguished AFL career with Richmond Football Club. Matthew went on to be the Head Coach of the Essendon Football Club until 2010.