Two NSW athletes have been announced in the team to end Australia’s 12-year Commonwealth Games netball gold medal drought at Parliament House in Canberra.
NSW Swifts captain Kimberlee Green has been selected alongside NSW junior Kimberley Ravaillion, with Green suiting up in the Green & Gold alongside NSW Swifts teammates Sharni Layton and Caitlin Thwaites in the 12-player team.
It will also be Ravaillion, Layton and Thwaites Commonwealth Games debut, with Green an integral member of the Australian Silver Medallist team that dramatically went down to New Zealand in double extra-time in the 2010 Grand Final.
“It’s been 12 long and painful years since Australia last stood atop the Commonwealth Games podium so we’re confident that we’ve picked a team that will end our golden drought in Glasgow,” Australian Netball coach Lisa Alexander said.
“It’s been an arduous task for the selectors and I to pick a team of 12 athletes to represent Australia; a selection that we’ve deliberated and debated endlessly to ensure we have the best team to reclaim the gold medal.”
After winning the first two Commonwealth Games gold medals in 1998 and 2002, Australia has collected the silver medal at last two campaigns, going down to New Zealand at Melbourne 2006 and Delhi 2010.
Coach Lisa Alexander named her 12-player team at a function attended by Prime Minister, the Hon Tony Abbott MP, Federal Sports Minister Peter Dutton and Australian Commonwealth Games Association CEO Perry Crosswhite.
“It’s apparent that the team has been selected with very strong leadership experience and the addition of young and skillful players who have shown they are capable of taking the next step,” Crosswhite said.
“I am confident that they will do very well in Glasgow.”
The Australian Commonwealth Games netball team will return to Canberra for a camp at the end of June before departing for a pre-Games training camp in Manchester, England, where the team will put the finishing touches on its preparations for Glasgow 2014.
Australia opens its 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games campaign against Wales on Thursday 24 July before the remaining pool matches against England (26 July), Barbados (27 July), Trinidad & Tobago (28 July) and South Africa (30 July).
2014 Australian Commonwealth Games Netball Team:
Laura Geitz (Queensland) – captain
Bianca Chatfield (Victoria) – vice-captain
Caitlin Bassett (Western Australia)
Tegan Caldwell (Victoria)
Julie Corletto (Victoria)
Kimberlee Green (New South Wales)
Renae Hallinan (Victoria)
Sharni Layton (Victoria)
Natalie Medhurst (South Australia)
Kimberley Ravaillion (New South Wales)
Madison Robinson (Victoria)
Caitlin Thwaites (Victoria)