Fitzgerald returns home to coach

WBOP Magic's Coach Julie Fitzgerald and Team Huddle during the 2014 Round 13 ANZ Championship game between the NSW Swifts and the WBOP Magic at Sydney Sports Centre at Olympic Park on May 25, 2014. (Photo: David Callow/ANZC)

Julie Fitzgerald is returning home to New South Wales to take on the role of Head Coach of the new Netball NSW national netball league team, with a three year appointment.

Today’s announcement marks a welcome return to NSW for Fitzgerald, who has forged a reputation as a world-class coach throughout her career, and been revered for her holistic and engaging approach to coaching at every level.

Fitzgerald said she was delighted to be returning home and looking forward to the opportunities and challenges that coaching the new Netball NSW*-owned team would bring.

“I am honoured and thrilled to be returning to New South Wales at such an exciting time for netball,” Fitzgerald said.

“I am NSW born and bred and the opportunity to be part of setting up a new team in my home State was one I couldn’t turn down.

“I have loved every minute of my time in New Zealand and will be eternally grateful to all of the wonderful people I met and worked with there, but for me this is a chance to go home and be part of a wonderful new adventure and a chance to build something unique.

“Not everyone gets the chance to help create a new team and club culture and working with local talent is something that always has, and continues to, excite me.”

Fitzgerald also boasts international experience, most recently as Head Coach of the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic (2014-2016), as an Assistant Coach for the Australian Diamonds (2012), two years as Head Netball Coach at the Australian Institute of Sport (2011-2013) and inaugural – and Premiership-winning coach – of the NSW Swifts (2008-2011).

Netball NSW CEO Carolyn Campbell said she was delighted to have Fitzgerald back on board for the next exciting chapter of Australian netball’s history.

“We are thrilled that Julie is returning to NSW to lead our new Netball NSW team as we begin the next chapter of Australian netball history,” Campbell said.

“This is certainly an exciting chapter. Julie has a proven track record in coaching at the highest level and an excellent knowledge of our grassroots game, which will be key in creating our new Club.

“Not only that, Julie is engaging and passionate about both netball and the people playing it and is a wonderful mentor and role model for players.”

Netball Australia continues to work closely with the clubs and Australian Netball Players’ Association on the players’ Collective Bargaining Agreement to deliver the best possible result for the players, clubs and the league. Further announcements around the new league will be made in due course.

*Netball NSW is working on a strategic alliance with GWS Giants.