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Tributes flow for Silver Fern Tania Dalton

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 1/03/2017

Tributes have flowed in for former Silver Fern Tania Dalton, who died nearly a week after suffering a brain aneurysm.

The 45-year-old was surrounded by family at Auckland City Hospital when she died on Wednesday morning, a day after her life support was turned off.

A memorial service will be held on March 6 at North Harbour Stadium.

A family spokesman said she'd put up '"the fight of her life, which unfortunately she couldn't win".

She's survived by her husband Duane , and three children Tayla, Charlie and Matt, who've asked for space for the family and her friends to grieve and celebrate Tania's life.

"We are comforted by how big of a life she lived in her short 45 years.

"She lived her life as we all might strive to; never on the sideline, always in the action, bring her A game as standard."

Dalton suffered the internal aneurysm during a social game of touch rugby in Takapuna last Thursday.

She never recovered after being admitted to hospital in a critical condition, having suffered massive blood loss and a loss of oxygen to the brain for an extended period.

"We couldn't be prouder of her, or love her more," husband Duane said at the weekend.

In a statement, the Silver Ferns said Dalton would "always be in our hearts".

"Tania was a true competitor on the court who showed a passion and love for the game," Netball New Zealand chief executive Jennie Wyllie said.

Australia's all-time most netball capped player, Liz Ellis, tweeted she was "sad beyond belief".

Olympic gold medallist also Valerie Adams took to twitter to express her sadness.

Dalton played 12 Tests, mostly at goal shoot, across an 11-year international career which finished in 2007.

She was part of the 2003 world championship-winning team, and also in the side that finished runners-up four years earlier.

She also played for the Northern Force and the Southern Sting, helping the latter to three national titles.

After her retirement, she became a well-known television commentator.

"Her infectious personality, hugely generous spirit and love of both life and the people that surrounded her made her an integral and much loved part of Sky's Netball productions over the past 10 years," Sky TV said in a statement.

Numerous other former team-mates and netball identities have expressed their sadness and support to the family over the past week.

She was hailed as a fun-loving, at times irreverent character, earning praise for her ability to balance motherhood with an extended and successful sports career.

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