Defending champs await NNSW Blues

After commencing their 2014 Australian Netball League (ANL) season at home last weekend, the Netball NSW (NNSW) Blues are on the road to contest Week 3 at Melbourne’s Waverley Netball Centre.

After finishing their opening weekend with one win and one loss, the young NSW outfit will come up against 2012 title holders Southern Force, as well as both Victorian teams, the Flames and the reigning Champions, the Fury, in Week 3.

The 12-man NNSW Blues will open the weekend against the 2014 Premiers on Friday 18 July at 7pm. The Fury boast seven ANZ Championship-experienced athletes, including five who contested the 2014 season; one of those being shooter Erin Hoare who on Tuesday announced to join the NSW Swifts for the 2015 season.

NNSW Blues Head Coach Briony Akle knows the challenges that lay ahead, but says her team are ready to test themselves against the best in the competition.

“The Fury are a really quality side; in fact all three teams we meet this weekend are full of talent. But that’s why we are here – to test ourselves against the best Australian netball can provide,” Akle said.

“I was really pleased with how we started our 2014 season last week against [Tassie] Spirit and [Canberra] Darters, and I felt we built from one game to the next. We’re going to need to do that again this week, and it all starts at training.

“This weekend will provide a great opportunity for our players to challenge themselves, for us to work as a team and keep to our structures. As long as we can go out there and play for NSW with pride, then we can leave happy,” Akle concluded.

The Fury have retained six members of its 2013 Championship-winning team, while four athletes have graduated from last year’s Flames side. The NNSW Blues will meet the Flames – Netball Victoria’s development ANL side – on Saturday 19 July at 7pm, before taking the court against South Australia’s Force on Sunday 20 July at 10am.

Keep up to date with all the action on the road with Netball NSW’s social media channels; www.facebook.com/OfficialNetballNSW, Twitter and Instagram @netballnsw #ANL2014 #GoNSW

The NNSW Waratahs have a bye this weekend and will return to ANL action in Week 4.

Netball NSW Blues – Week 3 Team
Toni Anderson – Sutherland Shire
Keira Austin – Eastwood Ryde
Nicole Deegenaars – City of Sydney / Sydney University
Billie Gurr – City of Sydney / Sydney University
Sophie Halpin – Eastwood Ryde
Georgia Marshall – City of Sydney / Sydney University
Lauren Moore – Wyong
Claire O’Brien – St George
Holly Pearce – St George
Claudia Russell – City of Sydney / Sydney University
Tanisha Stanton – Eastwood Ryde
Kara Styles – St George

Head Coach: Briony Akle
Assistant Coach: Amber Cross
Team Manager: Debra Hanson
Physiotherapist: Justin Walsh

2014 Australian Netball League – Week 3 Fixture
Fri 18 July VIC Flames v Southern Force @ 5pm*
VIC Fury v NNSW Blues @ 7pm
Sat 19 July VIC Flames v NNSW Blues @ 7pm
VIC Fury v Southern Force @ 8:30pm
Sun 20 July Southern Force v NNSW Blues @ 10am
VIC Fury v VIC Flames @ 12pm

*all times AEST

Click here to view the full 2014 ANL Fixture. Click here to view the 2014 ANL Ladder.