Fresh from success at the Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015, Netball Australia is ensuring its long-term future of the Australian Diamonds by inviting 21 of the country’s emerging talent to a specialist camp in Canberra later this month.
The invitees to the `Future Diamonds Focus’ camp will travel to Netball Australia’s Centre of Excellence from 22-24 September where they will train under the watchful eye of Diamonds’ head coach Lisa Alexander.
Alexander said the camp has been developed with not only an eye on the Diamonds’ next 12 months but also on identifying potential talent who will assist the team defend its titles at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast and the 2019 Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England.
Among the invitees are six athletes named in the Diamonds Constellation Cup team for the upcoming four-Test series against New Zealand – Ashleigh Brazill, April Letton, Clare McMeniman, Gabi Simpson, Gretel Tippett and Jo Weston.
Kristiana Manu’a, the youngest athlete chosen to attend the camp, Liz Watson and Weston have also been included in the Diamonds’ extended 2015-16 squad of 22 to replace retired trio Julie Corletto, Rebecca Bulley and Kimberlee Green.
“These athletes are going to get a really good taste of what we expect at the Diamonds level,” Alexander said.
“It is going to be very positive and enable them all to understand exactly what’s required in the Diamonds performance environment. We’re getting these athletes prepared so they could step up into a Diamonds Test team if needed.
“We’re also broadening our base by bringing along the generation underneath the actual team, keeping them up-to-date with specific Diamonds tactics and strategies and the actual technical work we’ve been doing with the team.“
Alexander will be assisted by a range of specialist coaches and targeted coaches at the camp, all with international playing and/or coaching experience.
Centre of Excellence residential coach Jill McIntosh and Nicole Richardson will work with the centre court, the defenders will under the guidance of Jane Searle, pictured right, and Mo’onia Gerrard, while Jenny Borlase and Megan Anderson will take charge of the shooters.
“This is absolutely world-class, top-quality coaching expertise,” Alexander said of the panel assisting her at the camp.
“Megan, Nicole and Mo’onia are all working hard on their coaching pathway skills and we are encouraging that and are keen to get their input, knowledge and expertise into this group.”
Future Diamonds Focus invitees: Ashleigh Brazill (NSW/West Coast Fever), Courtney Bruce (WA/West Coast Fever), Beryl Friday (QLD/Queensland Firebirds), April Letton (NSW/West Coast Fever), Kristina Manu’a (NSW/WBOP Magic), Cody Lange (SA/Adelaide Thunderbirds), Chelsea Lemke (SA/Queensland Firebirds), Abbey McCulloch (NSW/NSW Swifts), Clare McMeniman (QLD/Queensland Firebirds), Kate Moloney (VIC/Melbourne Vixens), Caitlyn Nevins (VIC/Queensland Firebirds), Madeleine Proud (SA/Adelaide Thunderbirds), Verity Simmons (NSW/West Coast Fever), Gabi Simpson (NSW/Queensland Firebirds), Kaylia Stanton (WA/West Coast Fever), Amy Steel (VIC/Adelaide Thunderbirds), Gretel Tippett (QLD/Queensland Firebirds), Liz Watson (VIC/Melbourne Vixens), Khao Watts (SA/Adelaide Thunderbirds), Jo Weston (VIC/Melbourne Vixens), Stephanie Wood (QLD/NSW Swifts).