Centre of Excellence achieve clean sweep of series

Tas_Spirit_v_Aus_CoE_049The Netball Australia Centre of Excellence team has made it a clean sweep of its three matches in the international series in Tasmania after beating Scotland by 31 goals in the final game.

The 57-26 victory over the Thistles in Hobart gave the Centre of Excellence squad three wins, following victories over Wales in Launceston and a 65-34 result against Australian Netball League side Tassie Spirit on Saturday night.

Centre of Excellence coach Nicole Richardson said there were a lot of positives to come from the series.

Pictures courtesy of Bret Salinger

“From a coaching staff perspective, we were really pleased to see the athletes grow not only as individuals but collectively as a team across the three games,” Richardson said.

“The athletes also really took on the feedback from the coaching staff and it was pleasing to see the girls starting to execute the strategies that we were trying to implement from the very first game that in the last game against Scotland.Tas_Spirit_v_Aus_CoE_073

“So the experience was just fantastic for them.”

A dominant five minute burst to open the second term set up the win over Scotland.

Midcourter Numi Tupaea (Western Australia) worked well with New South Wales shooter Kristina Brice to help the Centre of Excellence maintain its advantage in the second half and the team powered away in the final quarter to run out convincing winners.

“It was just a terrific defensive effort to keep the 11th-ranked team in the world to 26 goals in 60 minutes,” Richardson said.

Tas_Spirit_v_Aus_CoE_065Meanwhile, ANL side Canberra Darters will take on 2014 Commonwealth Games bronze medalist Jamaica at the ACT Netball Centre on Tuesday afternoon.

West Australian shooter Sophie Garbin, who was part of the Centre of Excellence side, has headed to Canberra to be part of the Darters’ squad for the match.