Netball has once again been front and centre in the Australian sporting spotlight this week with our successes at the AIS Sports Performance Awards.
Firstly I want to congratulate Netball Australia’s illustrious leader, CEO Kate Palmer, for winning the Leadership Award at Wednesday night’s gala function.
This award recognised Kate’s compelling and visionary leadership of netball in this country. This was also up against all sports in Australia and is a terrific vote of confidence in our sport and Kate’s leadership from our sporting peers.
I was also very fortunate to be awarded Coach of the Year at the same prestigious event.
As I said in my speech when receiving the award, I am the leader of a most magnificent team of coaching staff and support staff and athletes.
This team is big and broad and involves all of Netball Australia’s staff, our state and territory member organisations and the head coaches, support staff and athletes of our five ANZ Championship teams.
I feel honoured and privileged to lead such a wonderful team.
I also must pay tribute to the AIS Centre for Performance Coaching and Leadership for providing me with the professional learning and tools to complete my work precisely and accurately.
On behalf of Kate and myself, many thanks also to the Melbourne Business School for the wonderful prizes we both received to complete an executive course of study and associated professional development.
In another extremely important leadership position in our sport, it was great to see former Australian Diamonds Captain Nat von Bertouch appointed to the Board of Netball South Australia.
Nat’s ability and leadership for the Diamonds and the Adelaide Thunderbirds was second to none and I expect that she will be an outstanding contributor to netball in her home state of South Australia.
We’re only into February but it’s already been a big year for Australian sport with the Socceroos winning the Asian Cup on home soil.
That wonderful finish to the final when the true Aussie fighting spirit came through and the team scored the winning goal in extra time is certainly a memorable moment in history.
Next it is the opportunity for the Australian cricket team to shine and to maintain their summer dominance in their `home’ World Cup, which starts this weekend.
I’m sure everyone Australian Diamonds and netball fan joins me in passing on our best wishes to coach Darren Lehmann, Captain Michael Clarke and the rest of the team for a winning result on home soil.
The Australian Diamonds are right behind you!