Bassett, Corletto set to reach half centuries

It’s set to be a night of milestones for four Australian Diamonds when the team takes on England in its first qualification round match at the Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015 tonight.

Defender Julie Corletto and shooter Caitlin Bassett are both in line to make their 50th Test appearances for Australia as the Diamonds look to bounce back from Sunday’s five-goal loss to New Zealand against the in-form Roses.

Vice-captain Kimberlee Green will move into the top 10 of Australia’s the all-time list of Tests played should she take to the court tonight. Green is currently equal 10th with Jenny Borlase on 70 Tests.

Goal attack Natalie Medhurst also needs nine goals to reach 1000 career international goals in what will be her 70th Test.

Bassett made her Test debut against England back in October 2008, along with current Diamonds captain Laura Geitz.

The West Australian remembers her goal circle opponents were Geva Mentor and Sonia Mkoloma, who she will confront again at some stage tonight.

“I remember being so nervous,” Bassett said of her international debut. “I think I fell over five times and only shot three or four goals. I’m hoping to stay on my feet a bit more tonight and pop a few more goals in.

“It’s been a massive journey for me; I’ve made gigantic leaps in my game and I’m hoping to stick around for another 50 (Tests).”

Corletto, who has been part of Australia’s past two triumphant Netball World Cup teams, made her debut against Jamaica in July 2007 and said she always remembers a piece of advice given to her by former Australian captain Liz Ellis when she first stepped out in the green and gold.

“There was an injury time-out and Mo’onia Gerrard went down with a calf injury,” Corletto recalled.

“I remember Liz said to me `take a deep breath and smile, you’ve done all the preparation and just enjoy it’ and I still remember that moment today.

“Sometimes if I’m getting nervous I’ll just remind myself that we’ve done all the preparation, we know what we have to do and just smile and enjoy the experience.”

Australia has never lost to England in 12 previous meetings at the Netball World Cup with their last meeting being the semi-final in 2007.

England heads into the match unbeaten and its squad boasts six players with ANZ Championship experience.

“They’ve got a lot of depth throughout the whole court and have improved over the last two years,” Corletto said of the Roses.

“So it’s certainly to be another challenging game for us.”

Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015 will be broadcast in Australia on FOX SPORTS, Network TEN and via the Netball Live app, available to download from the App Store and Google Play. Check your local guides for match details.