Athletes named for 2017 17/U Nationals

Netball NSW is pleased to confirm the athletes selected to represent their State at the 2017 17/U National Netball Championships following multi-staged selection process.

The 2016 National Netball Championships will be played from Wednesday 24 to Monday 19 April, 2017, in Canberra ACT.

Nine of the 12 athletes selected will make their Nationals debuts in the nation’s capital next year, with Olivia Coleman, Lucinda Drinan and Matilda McDonnell returning from the 2016 NSW 17/U side which finished Runners-Up to South Australia.

General Manager – High Performance Anna Longman said the injection of new talent into the Netball NSW Player Pathway was a sign of the great depth of talent in the 17 & Under age group.

“Firstly, I would like to congratulate the athletes on their selection into the NSW 17/U Team. It’s a huge honour to represent your State, and I have no doubt under the guidance of Head Coach Lenore Blades this group will do in 2017,” Longman said.

“Netball NSW introduced a slightly new format to State Team selections this year, which has seen final phase  athletes participate in some on court squad training sessions. This allowed our State Coaches the opportunity to see the athletes in a variety of match play and training sessions, and allow the coaches to observe how players work within and respond to a high performance coaching environment prior to final selection.It’s also exposed the athletes to our High Performance Player Pathway and what it entails to make a potential career out of playing netball. That’s our end goal – to produce top quality, entertaining and talented netballers that will go on to the elite stage. For many, that will start at the National Netball Championships.”

Alongside the NSW 17/U Team announcement, Netball NSW is excited to name the athletes which have been selected in the NSW 17/U Talent Development Squad.

Introduced by Netball NSW in 2014 as a Development Squad, the 17/U Talent Development Squad provides an opportunity for identified athletes who didn’t make the final twelve for this year’s NSW 17/U State Team to continue their development in a High Performance environment.

Longman said the 2017 NSW 17/U Talent Development Squad will have a similar training schedule as their 17/U State Team counterparts, which will include match play in the lead up to the National Netball Championship in April.

“Selectors were very impressed with the talent available during this year’s NSW State Team trials, and I’d like to congratulate the 14 athletes who will continue their development as part of the NSW 17/U Talent Development Squad,” Longman said.

“What’s really exciting is not only the depth of talent, but also the regions these athletes are coming from; there’s athletes from Sutherland Shire to Penrith District, from Newcastle right out to Orange and Gunnedah. The dedication these athletes are showing for their netball is fantastic, and therefore we’re excited to be able to keep them within our player pathway.

“There’s only so many spots to fill for the National Netball Championships, and so the NSW 17/U Talent Squad gives us the flexibility to keep the athletes in our pathways, to continue to expose them to a High Performance environment, and see them return for NSW State Team trials next year.”

Netball NSW would like to congratulate all the athletes selected for the NSW 17/U Team and Talent Development Squad.

2017 NSW 17/U Team
Olivia COLEMAN – Randwick
Georgia COTTLE – Northern Suburbs
Lucinda DRINAN – Manly Warringah
Sophie DWYER – Eastwood Ryde
Clare IONGI – Inner West
Nakita JACKSON – Lakeside City
Sophie MacLENNAN-PIKE – Ku-ring-gai
Matilda McDONNELL – Manly Warringah
Bailey PULEPULE – Sutherland Shire
Jazmyn RODWELL – Gosford
Rhiannon STOKES – Newcastle
Latika TOMBS – Manly Warringah
HEAD COACH: Lenore Blades
ASSISTANT COACH: Colleen Mitchell
APPRENTICE COACH: Kirstie Fuller
TEAM MANAGER: Nikki Welsford

NSW 17/U Talent Squad
Beatrice DIGNAN – Sutherland Shire
Halle PIERSON – Liverpool City
Eliza PERKINS – Gunnedah
Makenzie SKINNER – Campbelltown District
Maddy EATON* – St George District
Annie MILLER* – Orange
Jessica LAGA’AIA – Sutherland Shire
Caity CAMPBELL – St George District
Jemma DONOGHUE* – Northern Suburbs
Alexandra BOLTON – Sutherland Shire
Madeline MELVELLE* – Newcastle
Renee MIHAERE – Penrith District
Dakota THOMAS – Newcastle
Hannah VICTOR – Baulkham Hills Shire
*training partners for the NSW 17/U Team