The Netball NSW (NNSW) Waratahs are preparing to contest Week 2 of the 2015 Australian Netball League (ANL) when they travel to Brisbane for a tough double-header at Ormiston College.
NSW will meet two star-studded opposition line-ups; the first being Southern Force on Saturday 27 June, before taking on hosts QLD Fusion on Sunday 28 June.
The Force have seven athletes in their extended 15-man squad with ANZ Championship experience –including NSW juniors Nicola Gray and Samantha Poolman – while Fusion have five ANZ Championship athletes in their line-up, including 2015 Champions with the QLD Firebirds Laura Clemesha, Beryl Friday and NSW product Verity Simmons.
While the NNSW Waratahs will still be without their Swifts trio for this week – Taylah Davies, Micaela Wilson and Stephanie Wood all given the week to recover after the 2015 ANZ Championship Grand Final – Head Coach Anita Keelan says it provides another opportunity for the other NSW players to step up to the plate.
“Look I think it’s going to be a really tough weekend – we still do not have our Swifts imports, they’re having a week off… so our babies are going to get out there and get exposed again,” Keelan said.
“Certainly both teams have formidable line-ups and have a wealth of experience with their ANZ [Championship] players so [this weekend] will be a really big challenge for us.
“I think it’s all about benchmarking and finding out where you are. Our team has a really big mixture of some experience and some up-and-coming players, and last week it proved some of our up-and-coming players really stepped up to the mark so that is really exciting.
“We’ll go out there, we’ll do our best on the weekend and see how we go.”
The NNSW Waratahs will be looking to add to their winning tally after returning from Week 1 with a 19-goal victory over Tassie Spirit, while they fell agonisingly short of a second win, against the Victorian Fury.
After fighting back from a 10-goal deficit during the third quarter, NSW took the lead for the first time with two minutes left on the clock and looked set to end the defending Champions unbeaten run which has seen them undefeated in both the 2013 and 2014 seasons.
“Moira [Gaha] was really happy with the girls [over the weekend], particularly in their game against the Victorians. They had a really slow start but came back and we got back within one of them, and really all 12 [NSW] players got on the court which was really exciting to have a look at how everybody was going to stand up,” Keelan stated.
The NNSW Waratahs have been dealt an early setback with their Captain Jessica Calderara to miss Week 2 after sustaining an ankle injury during the 2015 DOOLEYS State League Waratah Cup Grand Final on Wednesday, 24 June.
NSW 19/U National Champion Ashley Valeni has been called into the side as Calderara’s temporary replacement, while Claire O’Brien will also return to NNSW Waratahs as temporary replacement for Swifts midcourters Taylah Davies and Stephanie Wood for the second consecutive week.
Watch the full NetballNSWTV interview with Anita Keelan below;
The ANL gives players a fantastic opportunity to test their skills in a competition that bridges the gap between State League competitions and the ANZ Championship, whilst providing fans around the country a chance to see some of our best young talent in action.
Beginning alongside the ANZ Championship in 2008, the under-pinning league is a vital competition to Netball Australia’s national pathway, not only providing players with an opportunity to develop but also coaches, umpires and officials.
NSW has claimed just one ANL title, in 2011, when a Rob Wright-led NNSW Waratahs became the first ANL side to go through a season undefeated; on three other occasions the NNSW Waratahs have finished Runners-Up (2010, 2012, 2013).
Five NSW athletes have been named Tournament MVP since the inaugural season – Narelle Easther (NNSW Blues, 2008), Amorette Wild (NNSW Waratahs, 2011), Kristy Guthrie (NNSW Waratahs, 2012), and joint recipients Ashleigh Brazill (Western Sting) and Kristina Brice (NNSW Waratahs) in 2014.
Catch the NNSW Waratahs LIVE in action!
The Netball NSW Waratahs host their one-and-only match at home for the 2015 Australian Netball League season, when they take on the Canberra Darters at Netball NSW’s brand new $35 million centre of excellence, Netball Central.
The match starts at 3:00pm, with doors open from 2:00pm, so come along and catch all the action from some of the best and brightest upcoming NSW netball talent on show!
Tickets can be purchased over the phone. Contact Netball NSW Membership and Ticketing Coordinator Rebecca Donaldson on (02) 9951 5000 during business hours.
|2015 Australian Netball League – NNSW Waratahs Fixtures|
|Week 1||Sat 20 June||4:30pm||NNSW Waratahs 51 d by VIC Fury 52||AIS Arena, Canberra|
|Sun 21 June||10:30am||NNSW Waratahs 66 d Tassie Spirit 47|
|Week 2||Sat 26 June||4:30pm||NNSW Waratahs v Southern Force||Ormiston College, Brisbane|
|Sun 27 June||12:00pm||NNSW Waratahs v QLD Fusion|
|Week 3||Sat 4 July||8:00pm||NNSW Waratahs v Western Sting||State Netball Centre, Perth|
|Sun 5 July||12:00pm||NNSW Waratahs v Northern Storm|
|Week 4||Sat 11 July||3:00pm||NNSW Waratahs v Canberra Darters GET TICKETS||Netball Central, Sydney|
|Finals||Sat 25 July||5:00pm||Semi Final 1 (1v4)||Waverley Netball Centre,|
|7:00pm||Semi Final 2 (2v3)||Melbourne|
|Sun 26 July||10:00am||3rd Place Final (L 1v4 v L 2v3)|
|12:00pm||Grand Final (W 1v4 v W 2v3)|
2015 Netball NSW Waratahs – Week 2 Team
Kiera AUSTIN (Eastwood Ryde)
Kimberly BORGER (St George)
Kristina BRICE (CSNA/Sydney Uni)
Kaitlyn BRYCE (St George)
Nikki DEEGENAARS (CSNA/Syd Uni)
Maddie HAY (Sutherland Shire)
Lauren MOORE (Central Coast)
Jacqueline RIKARD-BELL (Eastwood Ryde)
Amy SOMMERVILLE (Eastwood Ryde)
Kara STYLES (St George)
Nicole STYLES (St George/Team Northumbria)
Melissa TALLENT (Sutherland Shire)
Temporary Replacement: Claire O’BRIEN (St George)
Temporary Replacement: Ashley VALENI (Sutherland Shire)
Head Coach: Anita Keelan
Assistant Coaches: Briony Akle & Moira Gaha
Team Manager: Maureen Stephenson