As sisters Maddison and Teagan Levi stepped forward to accept their Commonwealth Gold, mum Richelle was uncorking the bubbly and getting ready for a big day of celebrating.
Her daughters had helped Australia to an upset semi-final win over New Zealand, and then a trouncing of Fiji in the final to secure gold.
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It was a revival of the team’s 2016 Olympic triumph and ushered in a new era of Sevens superstars.
But before all of that? There was a euphoric celebration in the southern hemisphere that may not only have woken up a decent chunk of Queensland’s east coast, but also would’ve made mother Mary blush.
“Mum had a bottle of champagne ready at 6 in the morning — she was ready to celebrate and I think she’ll be on it all day celebrating,” a jubilant Maddison Levi said after Australia’s historic maiden Sevens gold medal win over Fiji.
“I don’t know if I can say it on camera (what mum said) but they were definitely happy.
There were tears of joy. It was a pretty emotional rollercoaster …. they’ve been with us through the highs and lows and to have two kids standing on that podium is pretty awesome.
“They definitely had tears. But lots of swearing, I can confirm.”
Maddison might have undersold the party going back home.
Richelle told Channel 7 later in the morning she was already two bottles of champagne down before 9am.
“Two bottles of champagne already done,” she said.
She was joined by at least one supporter wearing pyjamas for a live cross on Channel 7 as the party raged into the morning.
Maddison and sister Teagan are the new face of women’s rugby in Australia, following the path trodden by teammates Charlotte Caslick and Sharni Williams, and earlier Ellia Green and Emilee Cherry.
Powerful, pacy, skilful. There’s a reason they’re among the most in-demand female athletes in the country – with AFLW and NRLW clubs lining up to steal them from rugby union.
“We got to stand next to each other, so it was pretty sentimental. We’ve achieved a Commonwealth Games medal, not many people can do that in their lives let alone have their sister side-by-side,” Maddison said.
But judging by smiles that lit up Coventry Arena stadium on Sunday night, the Levi clan is comfortable in rugby union right now.
“When I first started I aspired to be like Charlotte Caslick and the likes of Ellia Green and now that I’m in this role I’d love to inspire the younger generation because I think it’s such a great sport,” Maddison explained.
“The opportunities you get you can’t get with most sports. And to have younger girls look up to me and hopefully one day be standing side-by-side with girls you call your sister and be celebrating this moment is pretty monumental.”
Originally published as Commonwealth Games Day 4: Latest news, schedule, results from Birmingham
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