Four-time Olympic softball medallist Tanya Harding inducted into Sport Australia Hall of Fame

Four-time Olympic softball medallist Tanya Harding inducted into Sport Australia Hall of Fame
14/10/2022
Tanya Harding’s contribution to Australian softball spanned 15 years (from 1993 to 2008), more than 50 tournaments and a total of 283 matches, including four consecutive Olympic Games medals: A silver medal in Athens 2004 and three bronzes in Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000 and Beijing 2008.

Four-time Olympic medallist Tanya Harding has been inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame, the nation’s most prestigious sporting honour. Harding joins Esther Deason (1994), Midge Nelson (1985) and Joyce Lester (2000) as Australia’s only other softball members in the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.

Tanya Harding’s contribution to Australian softball spanned 15 years (from 1993 to 2008), more than 50 tournaments and a total of 283 matches, including four consecutive Olympic Games medals: A silver medal in Athens 2004 and three bronzes in Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000 and Beijing 2008.

“Being inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame is such an extreme honour and I am so proud,” said Harding. “I am humbled to join the ranks of our nations sporting great including fellow softballers, Joyce, Midge and Esther. From my ground roots of South Brisbane Association, Brisbane Softball, Queensland and Australia, I want to extend my gratitude and thanks to all my teammates, coaches, umpires, statisticians, officials and the softball fans for all of their support not only to me, but to our sport.” 

As a pitcher and hitter, Harding competed in four World Championships in 1994, 1998, 2002, and 2006 (winning a silver medal in 1998 and bronze in 1994 and 2006) as well as four Olympic Games.

She is one of only four softball players in the world to medal in four Olympic Games, with three bronze medals and one silver medal. The other three are USA's Laura Berg (three golds and one silver), and Harding's teammates Natalie Ward and Melanie Roche.

She is part of a small group of Australian Olympians, including Ward and Roche and swimmer Leisel Jones, to medal at four Olympic Games. 

After the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, Harding made the decision to retire from international competition at age 36. She was inducted into the Softball Australia Hall of Fame in 2012 and the World Baseball Softball Confederation Hall of Fame in 2019.