Netball Australia has appointed Michelle Wilkins as the Netball Centre of Excellence Head Coach, a key role in the high-performance pathway.
A former Diamond herself, Michelle has been a part of the netball landscape for over 30 years.
Her resume boasts netball involvement in all corners of the country – Victoria, Northern Territory and most recently in Western Australia – across multiple teams and programs through Netball Australia’s high-performance pathway, from the 17/U program to current Samsung Australian Diamonds selector, and everything in between.
It’s safe to say, Michelle is part of netball’s DNA.
In 2017, she successfully delivered coaching roles as the Western Australian Institute of Sport’s Head Coach of the Netball Program, premiership coach of Western Sting in the Australian Netball League and assistant coach for the 21/U Netball World Youth Cup team.
As Netball Centre of Excellence Head Coach, Michelle will lead the delivery of netball’s high-performance pathway strategy to develop the next generation of elite athletes, critical in maintaining sustained success of the elite national program and the Diamonds’ international number one ranking.
Having taken the last few months off official coaching duties, Michelle is more than ready to tackle the new role in developing future Diamonds.
“I am really excited about staying involved in elite performance, and particularly that underage talent; it’s something I’ve always enjoyed and has been my niche group.
“I’m looking forward to working more closely with Lisa Alexander (Diamonds head coach), as I’ll be directed by what she identifies our junior talented athletes need to prepare and progress through the system.”
Michelle’s main focus will be around communication and collaboration with each of the State Institute of Sport and Academy of Sport Programs and to better align the expectations and values of the Diamonds environment to aid in progression.
“We’re really looking to try and engage more within and around our network, with our sister networks and academies, coaches and the athletes so we get a strong alignment and consistency across the year, not just a one-off hit at each of the national camps,” Michelle explained.
“The biggest task will be aligning the athletes towards what we expect of a Diamonds player, so the future of the Diamonds continues to build, and we maintain and sustain our number one position.”
Diamonds head coach, Lisa Alexander congratulated Michelle on the appointment and looks forward to working with her on maintaining the successful alignment through the high-performance pathway.
“We have one of the most experienced institute coaches in Michelle, who has the wisdom, knowledge and experience in working at the top level for at least 20 years and I congratulate her on this next chapter,” said Lisa.
“It’s absolutely vital for us to have a very strong alignment between the Netball Centre of Excellence and the Diamonds so that the transition from one program to the next is as targeted as possible.”
Michelle will continue her role as Samsung Diamonds National Selector and will begin her role as Netball Centre of Excellence Head Coach on Thursday, 1 March.