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    • Posts: 16934

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    1985 – A.I.S
    1986 – A.I.S
    1988 – not held
    1989 – SYDNEY TIGERS



    • Posts: 16934

    Member since:
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    Zone 1:
    A.I.S 40 def East Doncaster 39
    Randwick 41 def Tango 35
    A.I.S 56 def Randwick 42
    East Doncaster 46 def Tango 38
    A.I.S 57 def Tango 47
    East Doncaster 38 def Randwick 30

    1. A.I.S
    2. East Doncaster
    3. Ranwick
    4. Tango

    Zone 2:
    Manly 61 def Perth Royals 57
    Manly 63 def Valleys 54
    Perth Royals 65 def Matrics 48
    Valleys 26 drew with Matrics 26
    Manly 59 def Matrics 30
    Valleys 52 def Perth Royals 31

    1. Manly
    2. Valleys
    3. Perth Royals
    4. Matrics

    East Doncaster 45 def Manly 42
    A.I.S 49 def Valleys 40

    3/4 PLAYOFF:
    Valleys 52 def Manly 49

    A.I.S 61 def EAST DONCASTER 35

    • Posts: 16934

    Member since:
    Feb 3, 2007


    Tina Anderson
    Natalie Avellino
    Jodie Clark
    Frances Duiker
    Sharon Finnan
    Susan Gill
    Marni James
    Julie Ann Sloan
    Clare Smallacombe
    Alison Wheatley
    Zelda Yates
    Coach: Gaye Teede

    Janet Bothwell
    Janelle Derrington
    Patti Elmer
    Tracey Foran
    Cathy Lalor
    Sally Lovelle
    Leesa Moar
    Janelle Petersen
    Megan Pittiford
    Annette Smith
    Maria Smith
    Vicki Wilson
    Coaches: Jan Magaccis & Elizabeth White

    Debbie Curry
    Nicole Cusack
    Carissa Dalwood
    Keeley Devery
    Kate Englert
    Wendy Etherington
    Sue Kenny
    Cheryl McCormack
    Maxine Peebles
    Kellianne Ruddy
    Catriona Wagg
    Lisa Wilson
    Coach: Anne Sargeant

    Kylie Aggiss
    Julie Gibbs
    Yolanda Hearn
    Michelle Jones
    Shelley O’Donnell
    Wendy O’Donnell
    Nicole Richardson
    Rosie Richmann
    Danielle Silvagni
    Jenny Sparkman
    Cathy Spottiswood
    Michelle Werner
    Coach: Robyn English

    Sarah Angove
    Julia Blackwell
    Leanne Bottril
    Kim Delaney
    Kathryn Harby
    Vicki Neale
    Julie Nykiel
    Karen Schulz
    Leanne Smith
    Sarah Sutter
    Nicole Washington
    Coach: Marg Angove

    Tracey Cameron
    Helen Carter
    Donna Cocking
    Carol Davidson
    Maree De Haas
    Sue Gerrard
    Bev Howard
    Julie Neville
    Sue Nicholas
    Lori Patterson
    Amanda Wheeler
    Bronwyn White
    Coach: Bette Allison

    Bris KQs 42 def AIS 36
    Syd Tigers 48 def Melb Keas 31
    AIS 45 def Melb Keas 40
    Syd Tigers 61 def Bris KQs 39
    Perth Royals 55 def Adel Contax 30
    AIS 37 def Adel Contax 36
    Syd Tigers 68 def Perth Royals 39
    Melb Keas 46 def Bris KQs 42
    AIS 48 def Perth Royals 44
    Syd Tigers 56 def Adel Contax 34
    Adel Contax 46 def Bris KQs 44
    Melb Keas 55 def Perth Royals 54
    Syd Tigers 64 def AIS 44
    Bris KQs 66 def Perth Royals 57
    Melb Keas 43 def Adel Contax 20

    SYD TIGERS 57 def A.I.S 36

    Sydney Morning Herald

    The Sydney Tigers go into their first Esso SuperLeague netball game tonight billed as the strongest side in the national league and with the added advantage of having former NSW and Australian captain Anne Sargeant as their coach.

    It is Sargeant’s first non-playing coaching position since retiring from competition last year. She admits to being a “touch nervous” about tonight’s game, in which the Tigers face the Doncaster Kea’s, one of the toughest teams in the competition, in the first round in Melbourne.

    “I’m nervous but that is not such a bad thing,” she said yesterday. “I’m really pleased with the way the players have been shaping up. We’re being billed as the star team but there is a danger in that. This is sudden-death competition. You have to go in hard and play hard to get the points.”

    The Esso SuperLeague is the first major competition on the netball calendar and features the top teams from NSW, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport. They will play three preliminary rounds with the final scheduled for April 16.

    On paper, the Sydney Tigers boast the strongest line-up of all the States with five members from the Australian team selected last week for the coming Milo Cup against New Zealand next month and the Johnson & Johnson Cup against the West Indies in May.

    The Tigers’ vice-captain, Keeley Devery, returns to the national team after full knee reconstruction surgery which kept her off court for a year.

    After four weeks of hard training with the Tigers, Devery said the squad of 12 was keen to take the court against Doncaster, the side she predicted the Tigers would face again in the final.

    “We’re a highly competitive side,” she said. “With Anne coaching us we have a great advantage.”

    Following the match with Doncaster tonight the Tigers will meet the Brisbane KQ’s tomorrow. Their first match in Sydney will be on April 1 against the Perth City Royals.

    The Tigers team is:

    Sue Kenny (c), Keeley Devery (v-c), Nicole Cusack, Lisa Wilson, Deborah Curry, Carissa Dalwood, Kellianne Ruddy, Catriona Wagg, Cheryl McCormack, Wendy Etherington, Kate Englert, Maxine Peebles.

    Sydney Morning Herald

    From their lowly position as the only team with no chance of reaching the Esso SuperLeague final, Adelaide Contax proved the key factor in deciding who would face the mighty Sydney Tigers in next Sunday’s final.

    Before the last round in the competition at the weekend, only two factors were certain. The Sydney Tigers had secured their position in the final at Homebush with a 56-34 victory over Contax the previous weekend while Contax, who had not won a game, were out of the running.

    The other berth in the final was wide open with four teams in contention -the AIS on six points and the Perth Royals, Doncaster Kea’s and Brisbane KQ’s all on two points.

    The AIS could have gone straight through to the final with a victory in their last game in Canberra on Saturday. A win would have put them on eight points and beyond the reach of the other three teams who all had two games still to play.

    However, the AIS’s opposition were the all-conquering Sydney Tigers who, while not at full strength, represented formidable opposition.

    And so it proved with the Tigers winning by a comfortable 20 points, 64-44

    The home side, which had been concentrating at training on maintaining possession, were letting the ball go astray in the goal area in the first quarter. With the nervous AIS shooters struggling to find form, the visitors were able to establish a seven-goal lead after the first break.

    Despite the new combination the Tigers played a controlled and consistent game. “They dictated the terms,” AIS coach Gaye Teede said. “And we struggled once we were in a chase position.”

    The Tigers increased their lead with each quarter. Two changes to the AIS side at three-quarter time brought some relief but when the final whistle blew the scoreboard had the Tigers 20 points ahead.

    The defeat left the AIS playing a waiting game. Two victories by any of the three other teams in contention for the final would have left the AIS counting on percentages and previous results to determine their fate. Of all the contenders Brisbane posed the biggest danger as they were the only team the AIS had not beaten.

    The AIS did not have to wait long for a result. While they were being beaten by the Tigers in Canberra, the Adelaide Contax were executing their first and only victory of the competition against Brisbane in South Australia. Contax won by just two points, 46-44, but it was enough to oust Brisbane as a potential finalist.

    Brisbane went on to defeat the Perth Royals 66-57 yesterday to end the final round with four points. The Melbourne Doncaster Kea’s were the only team to secure the much needed two victories in a tight match against Royals, 55-54, and by a wide margin against Contaxs, 43-20, to leave them equal on six points with the AIS.

    As the AIS had won their previous second round clash against Doncaster, 45-40, the institute side secured their place in the final on a countback.

    For Teede, facing the Tigers again next Sunday was “the best news and the worst news” she had heard all day. “It’s great to have another chance at the Tigers but it’s a daunting prospect,” she said. “We’re a team of fighters. The team have never let me down. They just keep working away even when they have been behind. It will be an interesting contest.”

    Results from round 3: Contax 46 Brisbane 44, Doncaster Keas 55 Perth City Royals 54, Sydney Tigers 64 AIS 44, Brisbane KQ’s 66 Perth City Royals 57, Doncaster Kea’s 43 Contax 20.

    Points table: Sydney Tigers 10, AIS 6, Doncaster Keas 6, Brisbane KQ’s 4, Perth City Royals 2, Adelaide Contax 2.

    Sydney Morning Herald

    There appears to be as much chance of the Sydney Tigers not winning tomorrow’s Esso SuperLeague netball final as the Prime Minister not turning up to hand out the trophy and be photographed with the victors.

    While Australia’s greatest sporting groupie will be at the State Sport Centre to witness the final act in the Tigers’ unbeaten season, Mr Hawke will also be casting an interested eye on their opponents, the Australian Institute of Sport, who are funded by taxpayers.

    It was suggested to Mr Hawke’s minders that his attendance at the netball final would be a good public relations exercise, and not being one to dodge a great sporting event, the Prime Minister readily accepted the invitation from the All Australian Netball Association to perform the official honours on Sunday.

    It would appear, however, that the only chance the AIS have of taking the trophy back to Canberra is if the Tigers don’t turn up tomorrow.

    The AIS are a young, aggressive side who have done exceedingly well to reach the final. They have shown guts and determination in their lead-up matches, which have all been closely fought contests, except for their last-round game in Canberra which the Tigers won by 20 points.

    In the first quarter of last week’s clash the AIS matched the Tigers in possession but were unable to convert their opportunities into much needed points. Once they slipped into the chase position they struggled to maintain form.

    Compared with the raw aggression of the AIS, the Tigers’ greatest asset is their control and experience. Their side boasts five national players and is coached by former Australian captain Anne Sargeant.

    They have won all their games by large margins and all their players are injury-free for the final. And while both teams play a similar style of short, fast netball, the younger AIS players are clearly intimidated by the strength of their opposition.

    AIS coach Gaye Teede said her team would be having a light run at the State Sport Centre tomorrow morning to adjust to the environment and help settle pre-game nerves.

    “There will be a lot of pressure,” Teede said. “It will be a day of reckoning. The girls are very toey. They faced the Tigers last week and found out just how hard it is earn the ball. It’s tough to have to back up again so soon for the final.

    “We had a good look at the video of last week’s game and identified two areas we have since worked on. We have to capitalise on our attack while holding back theirs.

    “We want to take the game to them and not allow them to dictate the pace. We did it in the first quarter last week, though we played very patchy netball in the remaining three quarters.”

    For her part, Sargeant is looking forward to, rather than feeling anxious about, her first non-playing final.

    “We’re all keyed up for the event but I have been stressing that it will not be an easy job,” she said. “Our past record is a comfort but you’re only as good as your last victory.

    “I have also been stressing that the AIS have everything to win and nothing to lose on Sunday. They will be throwing everything they have at us and we’ll have to maintain the pressure.

    “I have every confidence in them. They are well prepared and more than ready to take on the task ahead.”

    Sydney Morning Herald

    The Sydney Tigers won the Esso SuperLeague grand final yesterday with the same calculated precision and casual charm the Prime Minister used to woo the cheering crowd at the State Sport Centre.

    The only member of the Tigers’ camp who didn’t seem to be revelling in the festivities at Homebush was coach Anne Sargeant, but then she had good reason. It was her first non-playing grand final as coach and the nerves in her stomach were only made worse by nausea she was suffering with her first pregnancy.

    The Australian Institute of Sport arrived looking hesitant and nervous. They were the underdogs and they were on unfamiliar territory. In their final round clash last week, the AIS had gone down by 20 points to the Tigers and few expected the young side to edge any closer yesterday.

    The Tigers took a quick 5-1 lead virtually before the AIS realised the game had begun. The visitors rallied quickly, however, and struck with a determination that took the complacent Tigers by surprise.

    AIS goal attack Tina Anderson saved a wayward pass in the circle, flicked it around the post to Zelda Yeates who netted the point. A few more quick points saw the AIS go into the break trailing by two points at 9-7.

    In the second quarter the Tigers came out firing and a series of short, fast passing sequences increased their lead to 16-8. The stunned AIS players went into retreat, a position they maintained until their defence finally combined midway through the second quarter to wrest a rebounding ball from the Tigers’ goal and channel it down the court for a goal.

    The crowd was momentarily hushed when the Tigers’ fiery wing defence, Lisa Wilson, accidentally smacked AIS centre Allison Wheatley in the mouth. Play was halted while a stunned Wheatley regained her composure.

    Wilson, who is not known to stop for anyone, also set umpire Jan Cross off balance later in the game when she dared cross her path.

    Some spectacular shooting from Nicole Cusack saw the Tigers continue to pile on the points.

    At half-time the home side led 26-13 and throughout the rest of the game Cusack continued potting points from all around the circle.

    To try and halt the Tigers’ charge at half-time, AIS coach Gaye Teede replaced shooter Yeates with Claire Smallacombe. Yeates netted only four attempts out of 17. In her absence Smallacombe clocked 13 out of 18.

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    Feb 3, 2007


    Sheridan Abbott
    Tina Anderson
    Natalie Avellino
    Michelle Benison
    Frances Duiker
    Sharon Finnan
    Nicole Foster
    Sue Gill
    Danielle Grant
    Amanda Grassick
    Marne James
    Tania Newsome
    Nicole Richardson
    Clare Smallacombe
    Nerida Spindler
    Jenny Urquhart
    Alison Wheatley
    Coach: Wilma Shakespear

    Debbie Abbott
    Janet Bothwell
    Patrice Bourne
    Janelle Derrington
    Patricia Farrell
    Cathy Lalor
    Leesa Moar
    Megan Pittiford
    Kim Richardson
    Vicki Wilson
    Coach: Jan Magaccis

    Cathy Cassidy
    Nicole Cusack
    Carissa Dalwood
    Keeley Devery
    Sue Gill
    Michelle Guy
    Sue Kenny
    Maxine Peebles
    Kellianne Ruddy
    Catriona Wagg
    Lisa Wilson
    Coach: Anne Sargeant

    Sue Dickinson
    Chris Harris
    Paolina Hearn
    Roselee Jencke
    Deanne Lindsay
    Jennie Longhurst
    Simone McKinnis
    Shelley O’Donnell
    Wendy O’Donnell
    Cathy Spottiswood
    Coach: Norma Plummer

    Sarah Angove
    Marlene Barratt
    Sandra Caon-Parsons
    Michelle De Meo
    Michelle Fielke
    Kathryn Harby
    Rachel Jones
    Jennifer Kennett
    Sarah Sutter
    Karen Schulz
    Coach: Julie Francou

    W.A.I.S GOLD
    Denise Abordi
    Justine Burns
    Erin Cummins
    Karen Hollands
    Wendy Horton
    Jodie McGowan
    Leona Muenchow
    Julie Neville
    Peta Simeon
    Julie-Ann Sloan
    Coach: Colleen Ranger

    Adel Contax 44 def Syd Panthers 43
    Syd Panthers 69 def Bris KQs 39
    Melb City 48 def WAIS Gold 27
    AIS 58 def Bris KQs 49
    Adel Contax 53 def Bris KQs 29
    Melb City 59 def Adel Contax 32
    Syd Panthers 60 def WAIS Gold 33
    Melb City 57 def Syd Panthers 42
    AIS 52 def WAIS Gold 34
    Melb City 56 def Bris KQs 32
    Adel Contax 53 def WAIS Gold 32
    Melb City 56 def AIS 41
    Syd Panthers 56 def AIS 30
    WAIS Gold 50 def Bris KQs 37
    Adel Contax 44 def AIS 39

    (played in Sydney)

    Sydney Morning Herald

    NSW’s netball mafia would rather not dwell on it, but for the first time in four years they are in danger of not making the final of a national competition, and, yes, they are feeling the pressure.

    Since 1987, NSW have repeatedly beaten Victoria in the final of the national championships and last year also won the pre-season Esso SuperLeague competition.

    This year, however, after losing the first-round SuperLeague match against Adelaide by a mere point, NSW’s Pulsar Panthers are on the back foot.

    One more loss and they will be out of the final, scheduled for Anzac Day at the State Sports Centre. To make matters worse, they have to play Melbourne City in Melbourne tonight to remain a force in the competition.

    The match looms as their most crucial, not only because Melbourne are such formidable foes but because the all-conquering NSW side is not used to facing such a pressure situation.

    Added to the uncertainty is the fact that Panther’s goal-keeper Kellianne Ruddy has been in bed with the flu all week – but coach Ann Sargeant would rather not dwell on that either.

    Nor are they looking forward to playing Melbourne in Melbourne. “When we play there as an Australian team the Melbourne fans are fantastic,” captain Sue Kenny said. “But they are very biased in interstate games.”

    “It’s hard to win away from home, but that is where our bench people come in and cheer us on.”

    Understandably, Sargeant is treating the game like a final. The players are heading to Melbourne earlier than scheduled this morning so they can have a run on the Festival Hall court and ensure their pre-match preparation is not rushed.

    “It’s a huge match,” Sargeant said. “It’s a very crucial time for the team. That one point we lost against Adelaide in the beginning turned out to be a big one.”

    Though she has never coached a losing side, Sargeant said personal reputation paled alongside upholding team and State pride.

    “Victoria are out for a big win because for the last few years they have been beaten by NSW at the nationals and their pride has been taking a bruising,” she said.

    “We are used to winning and that feeling is a precious thing, one that is made even more precious when you lose like we did against Adelaide.”

    Captain Sue Kenny said the whole team was feeling the pressure of tonight’s match.

    “We have been number one for a while and Victoria’s been the main rival,”Kenny said. “We are always the ones they are out to get. They want to beat us more than any other State. They’ve come close, but recently they have not been able to match us.”

    On paper, both teams are fairly evenly matched. Both have a good percentage of experienced players in their side and both have been beating their opposition by comfortable margins, save for the Panthers’ first round slip.

    Both teams like to play at a fast pace but both Kenny and Sargeant believe they can tip the balance in their favour by controlling the pace and minimising the errors.

    “It will be a good test of skill and effort,” Sargeant said. “We’ll be treating them with a great deal of respect. We’re looking forward to the challenge.”

    Sydney Morning Herald

    Favourites Melbourne City will be ready for anything when they meet Adelaide Quit 10 in the Superleague netball final at Homebush State Sports Centre today, coach Norma Plummer said last night.

    Plummer said she would not be relying on her awesome attacking power which tore Adelaide’s defence to pieces last time they met. Melbourne thrashed Adelaide 59-32 before a home crowd on March 18 to move into the finals with an unbeaten record during six weeks of preliminary rounds.

    “We’re not taking the game as a piece of cake,” Plummer said. “We may have won by 27 goals but Adelaide were at the other end of a tired leg during a two-day run.

    “They would have worked on areas which weren’t good last time.”

    However, Adelaide coach Julie Francou said her team, although underdogs, would be no pushover. Francou said that last time her team met Melbourne they did not perform to the best of their ability.

    “We were at the end of a double header but we expect the match in Sydney to be very close,” she said. “Our defence line got torn to pieces, their attackers were extremely fast -this time we hope to be a lot tighter.

    “They’ve gone through undefeated, they’re a fully settled side, but they had an advantage
    with the home crowd last time.”

    Sydney Morning Herald

    Melbourne City last night beat Adelaide Quit 10 to win the inaugural Prime Minister’s Cup in the final of the Esso Superleague netball competition.

    Melbourne, the favourites to take out the Cup, beat Adelaide 52-42 at the NSW State Sports Centre, Homebush.

    Melbourne goal attacker Chris Harris shot 29 from 39 and Deanne Lindsay shot 23 from 29 to give the Victorian side victory.

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    Division 1:
    Syd Pulsars 46 def Melb Blue 39
    Adel Contax 36 def Melb Blue 35
    Melb Blue 47 def Adel Contax 46
    Syd Pulsars 50 def Adel Contax 42
    Melb Blue 57 def Syd Pulsars 41
    Syd Pulsars 41 def Adel Contax 38

    1. Syd Pulsars
    2. Melb Blue
    3. Adel Contax

    Division 2:
    A.I.S 59 def Brisbane 41
    A.I.S 54 def W.A.I.S Gold 44
    Brisbane 63 def W.A.I.S Gold 57

    1. A.I.S
    2. Brisbane
    3. W.A.I.S Gold

    Syd Pulsars 54 def A.I.S 49
    Adel Contax 56 def Melb Blue 48


    Sydney Morning Herald

    Successful Randwick netball coach Carole Sykes could get a taste of her own tactical medicine on Saturday when the “Wicks” begin their bid for a third consecutive State League title with a match against arch rival Manly.

    Classy Manly centre Carissa Dalwood spent much of the past month absorbing the Sykes coaching doctrine.

    Test star Dalwood was a key member of the Sykes-coached Sydney Pulsars side that won the Mobil Superleague final in Canberra last Sunday. Sydney won five of its six matches in the five-week competition and carried off the Prime Minister’s Cup with a crushing 59-36 victory over Adelaide in the final.

    The Superleague brought together the best club sides in Australia, all of which were allowed to field four guest players. The Pulars comprised NSW titleholder Randwick plus a handful of imports, one of whom was Dalwood.

    “Having Carole for this series, there’s just a couple of little things that I’ve picked up that she has obviously taught Randwick,” said Dalwood. “I’ll be happy to go to Manly and say: ‘Hey guys, look what I’ve learnt’.”

    Dalwood was initially exposed to the Sykes style of coaching last year when the Randwick boss was given the responsibility of supervising training sessions for the NSW-based players in the Australian squad.

    “She’s good,” Dalwood said. “She is strict when she has to be and she knows when to lay off, which is good. She gives us a bit of space when we need it.”

    She was not the only “foreigner” to get a close-up look at the Sykes system during Superleague. The Pulsars coach also selected players from Randwick’s other two main rivals, Sutherland (Nicole Foster and Lisa Wilson) and Ku-ring-gai (Catriona Wagg).

    The possibility of these players filching her methods does not perturb Sykes. Indeed, the very idea of such a thing happening was sufficient to induce a fit of chuckling from the shrewd coach.

    “Not a problem,” said Sykes. “I think we have got our own style. I don’t think they could have picked up all that much.”

    In one sense, Dalwood’s familiarity with the Randwick players could backfire on her this weekend.

    “Playing against all the girls that I have been training with for the last few weeks will be strange and different,” she said. “I’ll probably be looking around and seeing them out of the corner of my eye and passing them half the ball.”

    Randwick face a difficult task on Saturday irrespective of whether Dalwood really does have any inside information.

    Earlier this week Sykes revealed she was struggling to rustle up the bare minimum of seven players. Centre Gillian Hynd and wing defence Tara Keen were both struggling to overcome thumb injuries, and experienced utility Maxine Peebles was struggling with a troublesome achilles problem.

    Two of Randwick’s test stars, Nicole Cusack and Sharon Sinnan, will miss the match because they are committed to attending a training session for the All Stars squad that will play Australia before the World Championships in Sydney in July.

    Sykes’s steadying influence on the side will also be missing because her services are required at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra this weekend. In her absence, Australian representatives Sue Kenny and Keeley Devery will probably share the coaching duties.

    Sydney’s Superleague success was an auspicious debut in the representative coaching ranks for Sykes, who is the heart and soul of Randwick netball. She played all of her district netball in Randwick and has been affiliated with the local association since its inception in 1969. A year later, Sykes was captain-coach of the club side from the region that won the inaugural State Championship.

    Randwick finished runner-up to Manly for most of the 1980s, but discarded the unwanted bridesmaid tag in 1989 when they won the State League-State Championship double. A crushing win over Manly in last year’s State League Grand Final merely emphasised the shift in netball dominance from the north to the east.

    Sykes’s achievements in steering Randwick and Sydney to major titles could lead to more representative appointments for her, including a place in the Australian coaching set-up for the World Championship.

    She relished her initial stint of representative coaching and would welcome the opportunity to do it again.

    “I thoroughly enjoyed it,” she said. “There was a lot of stress and strain, but when you get the spoils at the end, I think it is all worth it.”

    She had a deep pool of talented players from which to draw her Superleague. Adding the imports to Randwick’s quartet of Australian representatives -Devery, Kenny, Cusack and Sinnan – enabled Sykes to field what was the NSW team in all but name.

    Sydney started the competition splendidly with away wins against Adelaide and Melbourne. The home-team hoodoo, which affected all the sides, followed the Pulsars to Sydney, where they lost to Melbourne; but they danced back to beat Adelaide the following day and claim top seeding for the final series.

    Sydney scored a 54-49 semi-final win over the AIS and produced its most complete display of the competition to thrash Adelaide in the final.

    The Pulsars’ improved form in the final coincided with the return to action of team captain Kenny. This talented wing attack from Matraville missed all the preliminary-round matches because of a shoulder injury that sidelined her for a month.

    “In the institute game I was a little bit hesitant,” she said. “But against Adelaide everyone played really well. So it was easy. I was really surprised. I kept up with the pace much better than I thought I would.”

    Appropriately, Mr Hawke was on hand to present the Prime Minister’s Cup to Kenny.

    “He was quite talkative,” Kenny said. “He was really nice. He didn’t really say much about netball.”

    Goal attack Cusack, who was left out of the Australian team for the World Championship, won the $1,000 prize as Player of the Finals Series.

    Reflecting on the entire competition, Sykes was most pleased with defenders Devery and Sinnan. She also praised Peebles, who had the unenviable chore of trying to fill Kenny’s position in the early matches.

    Out of the imports, Sykes singles out Dalwood: “She put in a great effort.

    Most of the other club-based sides in the Superleague competed under their own names, but a sponsorship commitment obliged Randwick to play under the Pulsars banner.

    Although three members of Sykes’s starting seven were imports, she said Randwick could still take a great deal of credit for the Superleague’s win. Randwick has retained all of its key players from last year.

    The only major change has been off-court.

    The team previously played its home games outdoors at Heffron Park but will christen a new venue at the weekend. Randwick will play all of its home fixtures at the Moore Park Recreation Centre.

    Sykes rates Randwick a good chance of winning another State League title.

    Over the bridge, they have other ideas. Dalwood believes 1991 could be the year that sees Manly wrest back the title from Randwick.

    “We have got a few new tricks up our sleeves,” she said.

    She did not divulge the nature of the “new tricks”. Let’s just hope she didn’t take them from the Carole Sykes’ coaching manual.

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    Adel Contax 47 def A.I.S 42
    Syd Pulsars 44 def Melb Pumas 42

    3/4 PLAYOFF:
    A.I.S 50 def Melb Pumas 44


    Player of the finals: Marianne Murphy (Pulsars)

    Angove Says Rivals Now At Uniform Level
    Sydney Morning Herald

    For more than a month, Adelaide Contax threatened to run away with the Mobil Superleague national netball tournament.

    But coach Margaret Angove firmly believes the front-runners have come back to the field.

    The early advantage held by Adelaide has been nullified by six weeks’ competition, and according to Angove all this weekend’s semi-finalists have a good chance of winning the Prime Minister’s Cup.

    “We had a good start due to the fact that we are a team and that we’ve played together for three years,” Angove said.

    “We didn’t need time to settle in, like other teams did. We just needed our timing and decision-making fine-tuned.

    “Knowing each other’s capabilities gave us a head start. But I don’t think that counts for anything now. The other teams have had time to catch up and I don’t think we have an advantage at all.”

    Adelaide, South Australia’s champion club side, had been criticised for sticking to their normal team line-up despite the Superleague rule which allows a team to “import” up to two players for the duration of the tournament.

    Rivals Sydney Pulsars and Melbourne Pumas, in particular, have needed time to settle players into their best roles and have lost matches because of it.

    From four games Adelaide lost one-at home to the Pulsars 56-43-during the preliminary rounds. Sydney won two matches and Melbourne only one.

    The fourth semi-finalists, Australian Institute of Sport, won all of their four matches against Brisbane Chevron and Western Australian Institute of Sport.

    Adelaide have also attracted the most publicity for their ground-breaking Lycra bodysuit uniforms.

    “The uniforms have created enormous comment,” Angove said. “I think we’ve made more publicity through that than the ability of the players.”

    The change in uniform was made because the Adelaide players complained that the traditional collared shirt and pleated skirt were uncomfortable.

    “Our captain, Karen Schultz, came up with the idea that aerobic outfits were very comfortable and after lots of discussion we came up with ideas for a uniform made of cotton Lycra,” she said. “We tried lots of combinations over a six-month period and Dynamic Bodywear eventually came up with what they are wearing now.

    “We wanted to make sure everyone felt comfortable in the bodysuits. They have been very happy with them so far. The girls we have played against think they are fantastic, too.”

    Adelaide play AIS in one semi-final at the State Sports Centre, Homebush, tomorrow evening, while Sydney play Melbourne in the other. The final is on Sunday afternoon.

    Contax, who have never won the Prime Minister’s Cup, are “very confident”after their performances.

    “To win the Superleague competition would probably be our greatest achievement,” she said. “We have received heaps of criticism from the press for staying with our club team and it would be a fantastic feeling, after winning the State championship, to become the best club team in Australia.”

    Sydney Morning Herald

    The Sydney Pulsars overcame the physically intimidating tactics of the Adelaide Contax to emerge convincing 59-45 winners in the Mobil Superleague series yesterday.

    Sydney had gone into the series as rank outsiders.

    The Sutherland-based team made full use of its two imported players, shooter Catriona Wagg and defender Keeley Devery, to deliver the stunning and comprehensive 14-goal win at the State Sports Centre, Homebush.

    From the opening whistle, Sydney forged ahead, and only during a brief stint near the end of the first quarter did Adelaide get back in touch.

    The Pulsars, with just one win in the Superleague preliminary games(beating Adelaide in Adelaide by 13 goals) were not expected to match the tight team-oriented game of their opponents, especially after a 44-42 semi-final hard hit-out against Melbourne Blues on Saturday night.

    Ecstatic Pulsars coach Margaret Corbett said her team had a lot to prove and went out and showed up its detractors.

    “There were a lot of knockers at the beginning who didn’t think the girls could do it,” Corbett said.

    “I’m so proud of the girls. There were a lot of faces out there who, once given the chance in this type of competition, have really shown what they are capable of.

    “Karynne Lindwall was a second-grade State League player two seasons ago and Carolyn Digby is another quiet achiever.”

    Corbett implemented player-on-player strategies for the match, switching wing defence Lisa Wilson to the centre court and player-of-the-series Marianne Murphy to wing attack.

    With Digby at wing defence, Lindwall at goal defence and import Devery in goal, Adelaide’s notorious short feeds to the shooting circle were effectively stifled.

    Adelaide goal shooter Julie Nykiel, a former Olympic basketball representative, shot 76 percent, but her partner Sarah Angove was restricted to just nine shots from 16 attempts.

    The experienced Devery consistently intercepted passes and pressure on the two shooters forced umpires Maureen Boyle and Nola Calnon to award a succession of turnovers to Sydney.

    Sydney enjoyed a glut of possession, particularly in the vital third and fourth quarters, and were able to dictate the momentum of the game.

    Clearly frustrated, Adelaide players adopted behind-play elbow and shoulder charges but were unable to disturb Sydney’s concentration.

    In one 10-minute period, four players hit the court without possession of the ball and in the third quarter Lindwall was flattened by her opposition.

    Earlier, Adelaide’s tight marking and fast down-court play had Sydney scrambling, yet their inability to convert opportunities meant Sydney were never really worried.

    “I thought we had it by the start of the fourth quarter,” Corbett said.

    “Once the third quarter was over and we were ahead by eight goals, I thought we would have it from there.”

    Sydney goal shooter and former Adelaide player Lyn Kaesler was dynamic in the goal circle, complementing superbly the outstanding skill of Australian shooter Wagg.

    Both shooters potted 77 percent, Kaesler missing just 10 goals from 45 attempts.

    Adelaide coach Marg Angove said: “The ball just kept on coming in and coming in to the Sydney circle.

    “Kaesler must have nearly been the player of the finals, she’s a real club girl and all the games I’ve seen her play, she’s played really well.

    “But I’ve never seen the Sydney team play better. I’d like to make excuses for us, but there are none. We simply struggled from the start and we were never on top.”

    • Posts: 16934

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    Feb 3, 2007


    Sarah Angove
    Audine Cobb
    Monica Dinan
    Julie Halliday
    Kathryn Harby (captain)
    Julie Nykiel
    Vicki Neale
    Tania Obst
    Shelley O’Donnell
    Sharon Purser
    Karen Schulz
    Emma Sutter
    Sarah Sutter
    Nicky Washington
    Coach: Marg Angove

    Sheridan Abbott
    Natalie Avellino
    Jenny Borlase (vice-captain)
    Julie Brereton
    Michelle Fielke (captain)
    Robyn Gill
    Danielle Grant
    Michelle Kelso
    Josie Koch
    Karen Jemson
    Karen Johnson
    Cassie Mogg
    Leah Torzyn
    Coach: Pat Mickan

    Vanessa Chapman
    Karlie Clark
    Stacey Crane
    Fiona Doran
    Lyndall Evans
    Yvette Fong
    Emma Ganley
    Bree Hodges
    Kerri Holben
    Janine Lynch
    Joanne Morgan
    Victoria Saywell
    Waveney Seinor
    Alex Wheeler
    Robyn Wren
    Coach: Gaye Teede

    Patrice Bourne
    Liz Ellis
    Rachel Farnsworth
    Rhonda Fedrick
    Nikki Klatt
    Kerry Leech (vice-captain)
    Sally Lovell
    Carmen Mallett
    Leesa McMahon
    Kirsten Moore
    Emma Romagnoli
    Danielle Taylor
    Michelle Tollenaere
    Danielle Wheeler
    Vicki Wilson (captain)
    Coach: Jan Maggacis

    Michelle Benison
    Leigh Dixon
    Jennie Fallet
    Cathy Gillespie
    Chris Harris
    Diane Honey
    Susan Howie
    Marne James
    Roselee Jencke (captain)
    Katrina Latour
    Nicole Marshall
    Simone McKinnis (vice-captain)
    Coach: Norma Plummer

    Deanne Clarke
    Carol Davidson (captain)
    Leith Fradd
    Sharon Jarrott
    Jenny Keen
    Jodie Merralls
    Karen Mitchell
    Susan Nicholas
    Andrea Parker (vice-captain)
    Lia Pike
    Deanne Quartermaine
    Julie-Anne Sloan
    Michelle Worland
    Coach: Annette Simper

    Tina Anderson
    Maxine Brannelly
    Cathy Cassidy
    Nicole Cusack
    Carissa Dalwood
    Keeley Devery (vice-captain)
    Sharon Finnan
    Gillian Hynd
    Pamela Illidge
    Sue Kenny (captain)
    Dimmie Kosyfas
    Coach: Carole Sykes

    Sue Brown
    Tracey Evry
    Nicole Foster
    Lenore Furze (vice-captain)
    Lyn Kaesler
    Karynne Lindwall
    Lisa Moore
    Raelene Mullaney
    Justine Wakeling
    Jenni Urquhart
    Catriona Wagg
    Lisa Wilson (captain)
    Coach: Marg Corbett

    Syd Electricity 38 def Adel Contax 36
    Adel Garville 64 def Melb Pumas 35

    3/4 PLAYOFF:
    Adel Contax 42 def Melb Pumas 40


    Coach makes unplanned comeback to netball
    The Age

    Longevity in coaching at the elite level of sport demands a total commitment of body and soul.

    Veteran coach Norma Plummer is returning to the national netball scene after a four-year break in the Quit State League. Her return resumes a 30-year association with Victoria’s reigning premiers, Melbourne.

    Plummer, 48, has had a colorful netball career, representing Australia in the 1970s and assuming the role as Melbourne’s playing coach. She is delighted with the network of professionals supporting her role as head coach.

    “My comeback wasn’t planned,” Plummer said. “Coaching used to be a multi-faceted role because you acted as the club administrator, the trainer, the dietitian and the psychologist. Netball at the elite level now demands a structure within the club to split the workload.” Plummer encourages the netballers to be self-disciplined in their approach to training.

    “Our fitness adviser Lindy Murphy has individualised the pre-season programs for the girls and they are required to do additional fitness work,” she said. You either want it or you don’t – it’s up to the individual to put in the extra work.” Netball Victoria’s programs coordinator, Lindy Murphy, has incorporated Plyometrics into the skills program, to improve court speed.

    “Plyometrics involves jumping repetitions which become progressively more difficult,” Murphy said.

    “We focus on a netball-specific program, so the athletes are gaining maximum benefit.” Melbourne have recruited two Victorian Institute of Sport players, Emma Gleeson and Liz Taverner. Goaler Nicole Marshall and centre player Ingrid Dick have also been included in the talented line-up.

    The Pumas have an abundance of talent, with Australian players Roselee Jencke, Simone McKinnis and Chris Harris in their squad.

    Plummer believes Melbourne will be competitive for the new State League and Super-league (national league) seasons, but is concerned that the previous recruiting program failed to foster junior development within the club.

    “We have a shortage of key positional players in the club,” she said. “If we strike a major injury in the shooting area, we may struggle due to the lack of depth.”

    The opening round of the Quit State League will be held at Royal Park on Wednesday at 6.45pm, when Melbourne faces the Palladians. The Mobil Superleague will commence on 19 March at the Glasshouse, with Melbourne playing Sydney and Adelaide meeting Queensland.

    Learning to tame wild passes
    Linda Pearce

    FAST, fit, athletic, talented, dedicated, erratic. Michelle Benison has no difficulty identifying the odd word out; it’s more the eradication of that last unwanted adjective that’s causing her a few problems.

    The Melbourne Pumas’ centre readily acknowledges that she can play brilliantly for five minutes and then spray five errant passes that undo all her good work.

    Yet Benison is a little more than your average up-and-coming netballer who happens to like the game and can play a bit. She has competed at state level every year since captaining the Victorian under-16 schoolgirls in 1986, and, at still just 21, has toured New Zealand, China, Canada and, last year, Fiji as a member of the Australian World Youth Cup team.

    On Saturday night in Perth she will turn out for the opening round of her fourth Mobil Super League, as the sole constant in a Melbourne centre-court recast by the rules requiring former team members Di Honey, Cathy Gillespie and Jennie Fallet to return in place of three of the current State League Pumas.

    Benison, who is also vying for one of the remaining places in the national senior squad, expects her consistency to improve as the year wears on. But she is already in prime physical shape befitting the demands of the centre position from regular club training, extra fitness work and exhausting early morning weight sessions with Victorian Institute of Sport expert Vern McMillian.

    So what about those wild passes? “It’s the nightmare of my life,” Benison says with refreshing candor. “I like to think I’m getting better, but I still have no idea how many nights I sit down and analyse `what am I doing?’ It’s the main thing I’ve got to work on; I’m not going to make it as a top player until I get my passing under control, and I know that.

    And (coach Norma Plummer) is putting heaps of emphasis on it and saying `you’ve got to be responsible for every bad pass you let go.

    You’ve got to feel guilty for letting that pass go.”‘ Benison said Plummer, who has returned as Melbourne coach for 1993, had been an important influence, advising her to be more conservative with her targets, not to release the ball when in doubt, and not to over-commit on one foot too early.

    Indeed, Plummer is one of the second-year biological science student’s long-time fans. The former Australian captain first saw Benison play in her early teens _ at goal defence, from where she was moved for height reasons _ and rates her among the very best juniors she has seen.

    “In three years the kid’s gone from playing goal defence, to wing defence to centre and wing attack, and there’s not many players who have been asked to play four positions in three years at the top level, ” Plummer said.

    “Benno’s got everything going for her, and I think she will definitely be a force. It’s just a matter of learning to be a bit more controlled on the delivery.” Yet it is Benison’s dedication which last year contributed to her disillusionment with the sport after touring Canada with the Australian under-21s. To ask the average punter in the street about netball is to elicit little more than a blank stare.

    “Last year I got sick of netball,” she said. “We class ourselves as athletes, but people look down at us and say, `well, you don’t get paid, you don’t get any publicity, what sort of sport is that?’ Sometimes it gets a bit much and you wonder why you spend so much time training and playing a sport that’s not going to get you anywhere.

    “I’m into promoting netball … I’m into the body suits and the short skirts, even though a lot of people think it’s sexist. It’s not going to happen in my time, but I want my sport to eventually become professional so a living can be made out of it.” For now, though, with a full-scale national league still some way off, Benison will have to settle for the expanded eight-week Super League, in which the rather unfancied Melbourne Pumas will open their campaign against Adelaide Contax at the Perth Superdrome.

    Having run the lauded Sydney Randwick line-up to a goal in last weekend’s warm-up tournament in Townsville, the signs are encouraging for the Pumas as well as Benison.

    “As a team I just want us to be competitive, but I’d really love to win to show everyone who’s written us off that we’re not old has- beens,” she says.

    “And personally I’d like to say that I’ve played consistently through Super League … and that I’ve kept my wild passes down to a minimum.”


    Comment: On paper, this should again be the team to beat, despite failing by a goal to win the Townsville warm-up last weekend. With Kenny and Cusack up front, Devery and Finnan in defence and import Dalwood in the middle, it sounds suspiciously like the NSW state team that has won the past six national titles and performs when it counts.

    Comment: The defending champion has a slightly new look, having lost defender Carolyn Digby (pregnant), 1992 player of the finals Marianne Murphy (travelling) and the imported Devery. It has, however, regained defender Foster from a back injury and boasts a tall and powerful attack with import Wagg and last year’s surprise packet Kaesler.

    Comment: Debutante Garville won the lead-up tournament to confirm itself as a leading contender. But with star shooter Avellino nursing a foot injury and the application to include Victorian Yolanda Hearn, her Townsville replacement, missing the Super League deadline, the timing and impact of her return could prove crucial.

    Comment: Last year’s runner-up has finally invoked the import rule to strengthen its settled line-up, inviting O’Donnell to cover for injured mainstay Schulz. Expect the Victorian’s assimilation to be a key, and also expect big things from the 1 April home-town clash against arch rival Garville.

    Comment: Fourth last year and third in Townsville, the Pumas have had to reclaim departed trio Honey, Fallet and Gillespie, and James from the VIS. The defence looks strong and the centre-court adequate, but there could again be some worries in attack, despite the good shooting form of import Marshall and the experience of Harris.

    Comment: A creditable third last year after upsetting Melbourne in the play-off, but the large turnover of scholarship holders (giant shooter Morgan will link with 14 players new to the AIS program) suggests a repeat is likely to be beyond the institute youngsters in ’93.

    Comment: With some ugly off-court squabbling now over, Queen Vicki prowling the offensive circle and imported Australian under-21 captain Ellis leaping around in defence, Brisbane will not be taken lightly. But it will, however, still be a long shot for the semis.

    Comment: One of the outsiders of the field, with the WA state team having also fallen behind the big four in recent years. Opting against the import rule, the Bullets are hardly bursting with household names, but have Davidson, Jarrott and Parker to provide much of the on-court experience.

    <strong>Opportunity comes calling</strong>
    Linda Pearce

    THE bodysuit may be netball’s latest fashion statement, but for a quantitative uniform study, one need look no further than the bulging wardrobe of Shelley O’Donnell. You name it and the dynamic centre has worn it. Or probably will.

    In six years, the Victorian and Australian regular has also played for five clubs in the national superleague, now approaching its 1993 climax. Only once was O’Donnell able to play with her own State League club: then East Doncaster, now Keas.

    That was in 1989, the year after her superleague debut with the Australian Institute of Sport and her national championship with the ACT senior team. In 1990, she played with the triumphant Melbourne City composite team.

    But during the following two national league seasons, in which the Melbourne Pumas attempted to fly the Victorian flag, O’Donnell’s participation was confined to a weekend fill-in for Jennie Fallet early in 1992.

    This year, with the Keas again failing to qualify after another State League stumble and Melbourne opting to import Nicole Marshall to boost its depleted shooting stocks, O’Donnell once more prepared to sit it out.

    Then came the phone call from Adelaide Contax, stricken by the knee injury to long-serving captain Karen Schulz, and desperate to invoke the watered-down import rule to bolster the mid-court.

    To hell with the previously rigid stand against outsiders, thought coach Marg Angove, and her close-knit Contax unit. To hell with any reluctance to cross the border and play against Melbourne, thought O’Donnell.

    “It would be great to have the Keas in there but it’s a great opportunity for me because there’s eight strong teams this year,” O’Donnell says.

    “I jumped at the opportunity to play with Contax. I was excited because I thought it was a great opportunity to get some exposure and get some really good netball games and also to push for selection in the Australian team.

    “It’d be a bit different if it was at nationals playing against Victoria, but lining up for Adelaide against Melbourne is no different to what I’m used to lining up for the Keas – I was out to beat them.” The long-distance recruit spent a week of team training and togetherness before last month’s opening double- header in Perth.

    While O’Donnell believes that as a centre-court link player she has slotted in more easily than would a goaler or defender, there were, and still are, adjustments to be made.

    “I think it was very difficult for her to fit in but she has done it very well, both on the court and socially,” says Angove. “It’s quite an honor to have another Australian player in your side, and she’s what I call `in the game’ all the time.” While Angove has been impressed with O’Donnell’s balance and pinpoint accuracy at full speed and stretch, other hallmarks of her play have always been strength, power, dogged aggression and an innate competitive edge honed in the well-known Ringwood sporting family, which includes Essendon footballer Gary, and Victorian netballer Wendy.

    There are those who do not believe O’Donnell’s 1993 form is quite up to that of previous years. And while she is the first to admit she must work on her defensive skills, in superleague at least, she is feeling more comfortable with every game.

    Yet with the Pumas and Contax having sewn up two semi-final positions for Friday week’s play-offs in Sydney, and the two states reaching the grand final assured of entry for 1994, strong performances from O’Donnell could indirectly threaten the hopes of her Melbourne club team, Keas.

    “I try not to look at it like that,” she says. “Of course I’d love to win it with Adelaide. But if Adelaide don’t make it, I’ll be hoping it’s Melbourne.”

    The Sun Herald

    ADELAIDE Garville won the Netball Superleague, beating Sydney Electricity 56-49 in the final at the State Sports Centre last night.

    Sydney led by eight goals mid way throught the second quarter and had a two-goal lead going into the final 15 minutes. But Adelaide’s defence forced errors while shooters Jennifer Borlase and Natalie Avellino did not miss. Sydney dominated the centre court with a brilliant game from Test netballer Carissa Dalwood while Keeley Devery was exceptional in defence.

    Earlier Adelaide Contax won the battle for third beating Melbourne Pumas 42-40.

    Finals highlight Victoria’s weaknesses
    The Age

    If the capacity Sydney crowd, dramatic netball and gritty triumph by Adelaide Garville distinguished the weekend’s superleague finals, then, more parochially, the climax of the national club competition also served to highlight the apparent Victorian decline.

    Friday night’s 29-goal pounding of the Melbourne Pumas by Garville was one of the heaviest defeats inflicted on a Victorian team in recent interstate competition, while an improved effort against Adelaide Contax in Saturday’s playoff for third fell two goals short of salvaging some of the lost respect.

    So, barring another major format change next year, the state with the most registered netballers and one of the proudest competitive histories will again be restricted to a single superleague entry, while New South Wales and South Australia exercise their right to submit their leading two teams for 1994.

    And, coupled with the poor showing at last year’s nationals, at which Victoria lost to Queensland for the first time on its way to third place and its lowest finish in six years, the short-term picture appears unusually grim.

    To examine why is to note first that, with the Melbourne club having traditionally provided the bulk of the state team, the two inevitably share common ailments. On the weekend, lack of shooting depth was again shown to be chief among Melbourne’s problems.

    Then there is the issue of junior and rural development, which has only recently been addressed by beefed-up talent identification programs such as those which have long been in operation north of the border.

    As well, there has been a failure to translate continuing individuals and team success at under-17, 19 and 21 levels.

    Melbourne and former Victorian coach Norma Plummer described the shooting situation as “desperate”, admitted to concerns about the present value of the state league and called for a round-table discussion on the continuing failure to convert under-age success to senior level.

    “I know how the players feel about being the bridesmaid and they know themselves they haven’t had the extra one player that might have been able to put the ball through the hoop or pull that one in,” she said.

    “They are all working their hearts out but we haven’t had that ability to finish it off. We didn’t penetrate the circle (against Garville), and if you don’t get it in the ring and get the shots up, it kills the rest of the team.” Indeed, a feature of Saturday night’s grand final upset was the performance of Garville’s dynamic shooting duo Jenny Borlase and Natalie Avellino, who helped retrieve what had seemed a lost cause when Sydney Randwick stretched its lead to eight in the third quarter.

    The SA state league champion’s 56-49 triumph earned it the Prime Minister’s Cup in its first year in the competition. For years Garville has played second fiddle to bitter rival Contax, but with its envied strength in goals, the defensive skills of national captain Michelle Fielke and a talented young midcourt, the Greys are worthy successors to 1992 champion Sydney Sutherland.

    Final superleague placings: Adelaide Garville, Sydney Randwick, Adelaide Contax, Melbourne Pumas, Sydney Sutherland, Brisbane Broncos Canons, AIS, Perth Bullets.

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    Sarah Angove
    Audine Cobb
    Monica Dinan
    Kathryn Harby (captain)
    Vicki Neale
    Tania Obst
    Sharon Purser
    Sarah Sutter (vice-captain)
    Karen Whelan
    Vicki Wilson
    Coach: Marg Angove

    Sheridan Abbott
    Natalie Avellino
    Jennifer Borlase (vice-captain)
    Michelle Fielke (captain)
    Robyn Gill
    Danielle Grant
    Karen Jenson
    Michelle Kelso
    Simone McKinnis
    Josie Pearce
    Cassie Mogg
    Leah Torzyn
    Coach: Pat Mickan

    Megan Anderson
    Kylie Chamberlain
    Stacey Crane
    Fiona Doran
    Lyndall Evans
    Julie Harrison
    Rebecca Hayes
    Bree Hodges
    Susan Howie
    Natalie Read
    Victoria Saywell (captain)
    Waveney Seinor
    Peta Squire
    Kirsten Wheeler
    Coaches: Gaye Teede and Sue Hawkins-McLeod.

    Tracey Bruce (vice-captain)
    Kaylene Carmody
    Amanda Grassick
    Anne-Marie Hill
    Tracey Leaso
    Marne James
    Melissa McDonald
    Patricia McDonald
    Tracey Chapman
    Maria Smith (captain)
    Rosie Sprinkart
    Paula Stuart
    Coach: Liz White

    Manda Atta
    Narelle Eslick
    Sue Gaudion
    Peta Kennedy
    Diane Honey
    Leanne Mackie
    Shelley O’Donnell (captain)
    Nicole Richardson (vice-captain)
    Liz Taverner
    Lee Spreadborough
    Yolanda Wightman
    Coaches: Leanne Mackie and Robyn English.

    Leith Fradd
    Vanessa Hall
    Sharon Jarrott
    Karen Mitchell
    Susan Nicholas
    Philipa O’Connel
    Andrea Parker
    Lori Patterson (captain)
    Julie-Ann Sloan
    Amanda Wheeler
    Michelle Worland
    Coach: Sue Gerrard

    Tina Anderson
    Maxine Brannelly
    Nicole Cusack
    Carissa Dalwood
    Keeley Devery (vice-captain)
    Sharon Finnan
    Gillian Hynd
    Sue Kenny (captain)
    Dimi Kosyfas
    Rachael Morton
    Coach: Carole Sykes

    Joanne Babington
    Laverne Daniels
    Liz Ellis
    Reagan Gilmour
    Marianne Murphy
    Jenny O’Keeffe (vice-captain)
    Tracey Pearce
    Nerida Spindler
    Catriona Wagg (captain)
    Sharn Wheatley
    Alison Williams
    Coach: Julie Fitzgerald

    ADEL CONTAX 61 def ADEL GARVILLE 58 (extra time)

    Contax (Wilson 45/59, Obst 16/??)
    Garville (Borlase 35/45, Avellino 23/31)

    How the Superleague teams shape up this season
    Linda Pearce

    Last year: First.

    Comment: One year in the competition, one Prime Minister’s Cup. Garville, having prised Sydney’s sticky fingers from the trophy at its first attempt, will field the same line-up for the sequel. Star billing goes to the shooting combination of Borlase and Avellino, which has no peer at club level, and Fielke, who has few defensive peers anywhere. Having ignored the import rule in ’93, coach Mickan, a little suprisingly, has opted for import McKinnis as top-shelf injury insurance this time. With Grant and Abbott efficient through the mid court, Garville has lost nothing and could well gain title No.2.

    Last year: Second.

    Comment: Poor Kenny and co. Having to endure an entire pre-season without being referred to as defending champions. How unfortunate. Indeed, how unusual. But although the non-NSW netball world hardly went into mourning when the title switched states last May for only the second time in the five years since the competition was resurrected, the Randwick-based superteam warmed up for its crown reclamation bid with victory in the unofficial warm-up tournament in Townsville last weekend. Kenny, Devery, Cusack, Dalwood, Finnan … it would be a brave previewer who would not rate Sydney (1) odds-on to at least make the final. Again.

    Last year: Third.

    Comment: League regulars Contax slipped from second to third last year, just as Garville has usurped its role as the premier South Australian club. But, oh, what a difference a goaler will make. And not just any goaler. The world’s best, in fact. Vicki Wilson, the Queensland import who will replace the departed Julie Nykiel and help compensate for shooting-shy goal attack Angove. The defence is already as good as there is, notably team leaders Harby and Sutter, but considering the acrimonious departures of Nykiel and wing attack Nicole Washington, the tale of Contax’s season will be told elsewhere on the court. The talented Cobb, still just 18, will need to step up for a key role through the centre.

    Last year: Did not qualify (Melbourne Pumas finished fourth).

    Comment: Something of an unknown quantity to more than half the contenders, those absent from an apparently encouraging display in Townsville. Dominated the local scene in an undefeated 1993 and the defence will be bolstered by Melbourne Pumas’ national under 21 captain Taverner to assist Eslick, Richardson and wing defence Kennedy. The goaling depth may be exposed should injury or ill-health befall starters Wightman or Mackie, but the midcourt of Honey and O’Donnell – with the latter finally getting to stay at home after two years on the import treadmill – is a strength. And with all that State League practice countering Vic Churches beanpole Sue Dickinson, Keas may be better equipped than some to counter the height of Brisbane import Patricia McDonald.

    Last year: Did not qualify.

    Comment: In as the second-string NSW representative in place of Sutherland, which missed last year’s semi-finals, Ku-Ring-Gai’s unquestioned asset is its brilliant bookends, Australian goaler Wagg and emerging Australian defender Ellis. Shooter Spindler also has national-league experience with the AIS, import Murphy was the 1992 player-of-the-series in the triumphant Sutherland-based team and Sharyn Wheatley is a long-serving ACT national championship representative. Some promising young players, but a semi-final prospect at best.

    Last year: Did not qualify. (Canon-Rebels finished sixth).

    Comment: Another newcomer to inter-city competition, its bitter rivalry with Queensland’s Superleague predecessor Canon-Rebels led to Jamaican Patricia McDonald, rather than the home-grown product Vicki Wilson, being invited to velcro the GS bib. It will be interesting to see just how McDonald adapts to the sharper, faster Australian style, although when you’re that tall and it’s a limited-contact sport, the odds are certainly in your favor. Smith, Bruce (nee Foran), Carmody, Grassick and James are all experienced state representatives, and it would not surprise to see Downey Park improve Queensland’s position.

    Last year: Seventh.

    Comment: Improved as last year’s series went on, but with the experience of only one second-year scholar to call on still slipped significantly from the creditable third placing of the previous year to head only the wooden spoon-wielders from Perth. This time five players are returning – including Saywell, Seinor and Northern Territory trailblazer Crane – with big things also expected from West Indies tourists Susan Howie and Peta Squire. May frighten a few.

    Last year: Eighth.

    Comment: After languishing winless from its seven games last year, the Bullets boast several new faces, a new coach and, apparently, a new attitude for 1994. They’ll need them, particularly now that import Jencke has succumbed to the chronic back injury that prompted her international retirement and, having withdrawn past the 31 January deadline for team nomination, cannot be replaced. That rule will be reviewed for next year but it will be little consolation for Perth. The best it can hope for is to be competitive.

    Chaos over netball final
    Linda Pearce

    ADELAIDE Contax finally claimed the major interstate prize it has sought for so long with a controversial 61-58 overtime win over hometown rival Adelaide Garville in last night’s netball Superleague grand final at the Powerhouse.

    While Garville officials believe a scoring discrepancy had robbed them of a one-goal victory, the official score sheet had scores tied at 47- 47 after regular time, and play was extended for 14 minutes.

    Garville coach Pat Mickan said the team would lodge a protest but had been told already that the result would stand.

    “We believe in our hearts in the fact that we won the game,” she said. Garville captain Michelle Fielke refused to sign the scorecard.

    Garville, the defending champion, grabbed the early overtime break and held a two-goal lead at the final change of ends, Contax having lost goal attack Tania Obst two minutes earlier with a leg injury.

    But Contax lost nothing with the substitution of regular feeder Sarah Angove who failed to score a goal but, more importantly, channeled the ball to champion import Vicki Wilson.

    Wilson’s battle with Fielke, Australia’s captain, was one of the high points of an absorbing and physical match, which ended with emotional scenes and a crowd invasion of the court.

    It has taken Wilson nearly a decade as one of the netball world’s leading shooters to finally break through for a major domestic win.

    She had to leave her home state of Queensland to do it, but was the key player in last night’s triumph.

    Despite missing the final shot for goal in regular time, Wilson scored a match-high 45 goals at 76 per cent under fierce pressure, including the last three of the match. If the missing ingredient for Contax has been a class shooter, then this has proven to be an inspired recruiting choice.

    Yet Garville was also a gallant runner-up and worthy finalist.

    Shooters Jenny Borlase (35 goals at 77 per cent) and Natalie Avellino (23 goals at 74 per cent) were an exceptional combination at the other end, while the mid-court match-ups were typically tight between these two regular and fierce foes.

    It will be a pity if such a fine and desperate exhibition of netball is soured by a scoring controversy but many in the stadium were bewildered when the scoreboard was amended five minutes into the last quarter from a 42-40 Garville lead to 41 goals each.

    Netball final result is “final”
    The Age

    The result of the Adelaide Garville-Adelaide Contax Netball Superleague final will stand regardless of the outcome of yesterday’s appeal by Garville.

    The national executive director of the All Australian Netball Association, Pam Smith, said there was no way the score would change, even if Garville could prove it had been robbed of victory.

    Smith said association rules did not provide for a review of match scores and video evidence could not be considered.

    “We will certainly view the video because I would like to see for myself what happened but Contax will remain champions, whatever happens,” Smith said.

    Garville was beaten in overtime by three goals. The official score was 61-58. However, Garville believes it won by two goals. The electronic scoreboard changed from 42-40 in favor of Garville to 41-41 in the last quarter.

    Garville coach Pat Mickan watched a video of the final quarter and believes her team should have won. She said the team would consider legal action if Garville was not awarded the Prime Minister’s Cup.

    “The system is unfair and undemocratic and we have to challenge a system which allows these things to happen. We can show the AANA the video, we can count the number of goals we scored, show them the scorecard is wrong.”

    Smith said video evidence would not be considered because it “opened up a whole range of different problems”.

    “We can’t have teams looking at the videos are saying: Oh, that wasn't a goal' orThat was a goal we didn’t get.’ The debate would never end,” she said.

    But Mickan said the battle was not over an umpire’s decision: “We would never criticise an umpire because umpiring is always subjective. You expect, when you go into a game, that the umpire will make decisions with which you don’t agree. However, we do not accept that a game should be decided on the human error of a scorekeeper.”

    Netball scores are recorded by an official scorekeeper, who is aided by a “caller” who calls out goals as they are scored. Mistakes can happen when the caller gives incorrect information, or looks away from the match for a moment and misses a goal. Similarly, the scorekeeper could record a Contax goal as a Garville goal or vice versa.

    Contax coach Margaret Angove said it would be a sad day for netball if Garville took the matter to court. “You can’t change the score now. We believe we won fairly and within the rules and that is all that matters.”

    Angove said the team would not hand victory to Garville even if video evidence proved Garville had won. “If we had been two goals down, we would have played differently. We would not consider a replay either. It’s like a bad umpiring decision: you just have to wear it.”

    You decide: The ABC will screen 60 of the 74 minutes of the controversial Garville-Contax Superleague grand final from 5pm on Saturday.

    THE Melbourne Keas, Victoria’s sole representative in the Superleague, will protest against the decision not to allow a second Melbourne team to compete. Keas co-coach Leanne Mackie said a second team should be allowed because Melbourne had done well to finish third.

    “It’s crazy to have two teams from Sydney when one of them came fourth and the other didn’t even make the finals series,” Mackie said.

    Garville was robbed of title – it’s official
    The Age

    Adelaide Garville was robbed of victory in the netball Superleague grand final last Saturday by a scorekeeper’s error. The official score was 61-58 in favor of Adelaide Contax but should have been 48-46 in favor of Garville.

    The All Australian Netball Association admitted the error yesterday.

    Executive director Pam Smith said the incorrect result would stand and Contax would keep the Prime Minister’s Cup.

    “It’s pointless trying to make amends now and we don’t have the mechanics to do it,” Smith said. We have to go by the official scorecard even if it was wrong. We will now look at ways of making sure it doesn’t happen again.”

    Smith said the mistake had been made in the third quarter. The electronic scoreboard, which changed from 42-40 in favor of Garville to 41-all in the final quarter, had been correct. The game ended with an official 47-47 draw, although the correct score was 48-46. Contax won in overtime.

    Garville coach Pat Mickan said yesterday that players were unlikely to let the matter rest because the team wanted the Prime Minister’s Cup.

    “We are still considering court action, not because we want to punish Contax but because the system is wrong and should be changed,” she said.

    “If we take it to court, we would have to prove that all the safety checks or scoring checks were not in place and I think we can easily do that since there was only one scorer, who was wrong.”

    Contax coach Margaret Angove said both teams must accept the official result or risk damaging the game of netball.

    “We played to the official score,” she said. “If we had believed we were two goals down, we would have played a different game, as Garville would have. We would have taken more risks and perhaps gone on to win.

    “We should remember that neither Garville nor Contax made a mistake. It was an error in the system.

    “What is really sad is that Contax have been robbed of the pleasure and excitement of winning a national netball final. Our players have even been abused. It would be nice if people remembered we played wonderful netball, but nobody is saying that.”

    Smith said Contax and Garville players were upset by the outcome.

    “Garville know they technically should have won and there is nothing they can do about that,” she said. “Also, Contax feel they have been robbed of victory because the scorecard has them as the official winners.”

    The ABC, which will edit the 74-minute game into a 60-minute program, will show the third and fourth quarters in full.

    Amateur sport made to look amateurish
    Linda Pearce

    WELL, well, well. So netball has made a rare visit to the world of prominent headlines and back-page notoriety this past week. It has been discussed with genuine interest by those outside its traditional, devoted core. Overheard in sporting conversations where it has rarely been raised before.

    Yet not, sadly, in praise of a superb Superleague grand final between two great rivals in Adelaide last Saturday night. And not, unfortunately, to discuss a magnificent duel between Australian captain Michelle Fielke and her champion national teammate Vicki Wilson. Or an inspiring comeback by new champion Adelaide Contax. Or any number of other highlights.

    Instead, the talk has reinforced the cuppa-and-scones reputation that all who administer the sport say they have fought so long to dispel.

    Farce. Debacle. Fiasco. Schemozzle. Call it what you will. Everyone else has.

    It has now become clear exactly what happened eight days ago, before 5000 disbelieving patrons at the Adelaide Powerhouse. During the third quarter, the official scorer and the official caller somehow combined to place a goal scored by Adelaide Garville on Adelaide Contax’s side of the sheet.

    The three-quarter-time score therefore had Garville trailing 36-37 when in fact it led 37-36, as indicated correctly on the electronic scoreboard. Immediately the scorer, a Sydney-based volunteer, set about reconciling the discrepancy. But she could not. After all, her figures added up. They just added up wrongly.

    So when an injury time was called in the last quarter, the stadium board amended Garville’s 42-40 lead to a 41-41 deadlock. And when regular time elapsed, what should have been a 48-46 win was recorded on the sole official scoresheet as 47-47. Garville protested. The fans shrieked. Extra time was played and Contax triumphed 61-58.

    All of which was bad enough, with embarrassing confirmation of what most already knew arriving at 6.20pm on Monday when All Australia Netball Association executive director Pam Smith and the ABC’s Colin Nicholson viewed the videotape and the error was identified.

    But the damage done since is impossible to quantify. Just as the lead- up to the game was dominated by trivial objections to Contax’s male cheersquad, so the aftermath has ensured that one of the great netball games in the showcase competition, sponsored for $1 million over three years, will be remembered merely, in the words of one prominent official last week, as a complete cock-up”.

    The interest of my sports-writing colleagues is usually minimal when I return from a netball event. Perhaps the first exception was the day after the 1991 world championship final, the game that did infinitely more than any other to thrust Australia’s leading female participant sport towards populist credibility. The second was last week. For the opposite reasons.

    It is missing the point to argue that at least it is being talked about. There may generally be an element of truth in that old theory, but in this case the attention has merely added to the perception that dear old netball has shot itself in the foot – again.

    So, given that the inadequate rules did not provide for prompt viewing of the videotape on Saturday night (that is likely to change) and that apparently neither do they now allow a change of result (perhaps a draw would be the fairest outcome as the Contax players claim they would have played differently had they been behind), n or the crowded calendar scope for a replay, where to from here? AANA has admitted its error but dismissed Garville’s appeal and ruled the result will stand. Shades of Kerry Good’s goal for North Melbourne after the siren in the 1980 night grand final, which was not so much a human error as that of the Waverley public-address system. Even so, it did little to soothe Collingwood fans or right an obvious wrong.

    Still, we now hear that the cause of netball’s problem has been addressed. A system involving three scorers and two callers will be trialled in Canberra next week. While the official scorer will still be required to double as a statistician and record the misses and penalty shots as well as the goals and centre passes, at least there will be cross-reference guides in case of a discrepancy.

    Which is all, of course, too late for Garville, whose actions continue to be directed by legal advice and whose appearance in the courts has yet to be ruled out. Even the winners have had a hollow celebration further soured last week by ridiculous public abuse.

    So the events of last Saturday and the ensuing attention have come at a significant cost. Netballers remain amateur, but their sport has been made to appear foolishly so. It is expensive publicity that all involved can ill-afford.

    • Posts: 16934

    Member since:
    Feb 3, 2007


    Syd Electricity 79 def Perth Bullets 39
    Adel Garville 49 def Adel Contax 39
    Syd Electricity 53 def Adel Contax 49
    Melb Pumas 46 def Adel Contax 40
    Melb Pumas 59 def Brisbane 33
    Adel Contax 52 def Syd Cenovis 37
    Melb Pumas 74 def A.I.S 37
    Adel Garville 75 def Perth Bullets 53
    Melb Pumas 55 def Adel Garville 54
    Adel Garville 80 def A.I.S 38
    Melb Pumas 64 def Perth Bullets 41
    Perth Bullets 53 def A.I.S 52
    Adel Contax 60 def A.I.S 29
    Adel Contax 55 def Brisbane 34
    Syd Electricity 68 def A.I.S 30
    Syd Electricity 61 def Brisbane 52
    Syd Cenovis 58 def Perth Bullets 58
    A.I.S 52 def Brisbane 46
    Syd Electricity 62 def Cenovis 46
    Adel Garville 80 def Brisbane 33
    Adel Garville 66 def Syd Electricity 65


    Syd Electricity 63 def Adel Contax 45
    Melb Pumas 55 def Adel Garville 53

    3/4 PLAYOFF:

    Adel Garville 62 def Adel Contax 46


    (12-10, 28-17, 40-27, 53-45)

    GS . Morgan
    GA . Cusack
    WA . Kenny
    C .. Dalwood
    WD . Kosyfas
    GD . Finnan
    GK . Devery


    Shooting stats:
    Morgan 38/47 80%, Cusack 15/20 75%, TOTAL 53/67 79%

    GS . Southby
    GA . Arnott
    WA . Benison
    C .. Dick
    WD . McKinnis
    GD . Lynch
    GK . Taverner


    Shooting stats:
    Southby 26/35 74%, Bryant 16/18 88%, Arnott 3/9 33%, TOTAL 45/62 73%

    Same colors, different league, for this Southby
    The Age

    Down at Melbourne Waverley Pumas, her coach calls her “junior”. But, at 187 centimetres, 18-year-old Eloise Southby is likely to be the biggest junior netballer playing in the Mobil League this season.

    Southby, who is the youngest player in the Pumas team (hence the nickname), will make her Mobil League debut tonight in the club’s blue and white colors.

    And despite her tender years, Southby is only two centimetres shorter than the tallest player in the league, imposing Sydney Electricity shooter Joanne Morgan.

    Not that her height is necessarily an advantage. “Taller players shoot the same as everyone else, using the same shooting styles,” she said. “The fact is we are slower than shorter players and we have to constantly work on our speed and agility.”

    Originally from North Melbourne club, Southby moved to the Pumas in 1993 when offered a place on the team by coach Norma Plummer.

    Southby said the pressure this season was not all that great. “The best thing about this series (of the Mobil League) is that we can go out there with nothing to lose. We’re a young side, and they have to prove that they can beat us,” she said.

    Southby said the Pumas’ biggest threat came from last year’s finalists, Adelaide teams Garville and Contax, as well as from Sydney Electricity.

    The rising star, daughter of former Carlton champion Geoff Southby, has played at various age levels for the Australian squad. She was in the under-21 line-up that thrashed Trinidad and Tobago last year and has been chosen for various under-17s and 19s sides. For Southby, the best possible post-season result would be selection in the under-21 team that will compete for the world championships next year.

    Another of her goals is to be able to equal the performance of Australia’s premier goal shooter, Adelaide Contax player Vicki Wilson.

    The Pumas play their first match of the season against Brisbane Downey at the Tasmania Silverdome tonight.

    Their first home game will be at the Waverley Netball Centre on 21 and 22 April.


    THE experienced Sydney Electricity team proved too good for the youthful Melbourne Waverley Pumas, winning the national netball league grand final 53-45 at the State Sports Centre last night.

    Goalkeeper Keeley Devery and goal defence Sharon Finnan were relentless for Sydney.

    The tight defensive work of Puma Liz Taberner was not enough to stop Sydney’s brilliant shooting combination of Joanne Morgan (80 per cent) and Nicole Cusack (75 per cent).

    The shooters co-ordinated their efforts to convert their shots into valuable points.

    • Posts: 16934

    Member since:
    Feb 3, 2007


    Pumas set for next step
    Linda Pearce

    A new, expanded national league begins next year. Linda Pearce previews the final year of competition as we know it.

    WHAT was conceived in 1985 and nurtured through several changes of name and identity is in its death throes. What happens this year will lay to rest the abbreviated form of club-based competition we have come to know, if not love. And so what has been referred to as a national netball league will next year be truly that.

    The 1996 Mobil League starts at Melbourne’s Waverley netball stadium on Friday night and ends – for this year and for good – at Adelaide’s Powerhouse on 27 May. Then, finally, when the bigger, better and longer version is introduced in 1997, Victoria will get the two-team representation it has long craved and probably deserved.

    Yet the new national champion state is not without legitimate hope of farewelling the old format in style. Victorian teams have won only two of the 11 titles decided but its sole representative, Melbourne-Waverley Pumas, surprised most observers in 1995 by reaching the grand final against the vastly more experienced Sydney Electricity.

    It lost, but gained plenty. Now, 12 months on, coach Norma Plummer believes her maturing squad has everything required to take the extra step not managed by a local team since the composite Melbourne City in 1990. Last year, the goal was to make the grand final. This year it is to win.

    “Everyone kept thinking we didn’t really have a chance, possibly because Victorian netball had been at such a low ebb,” she says. That was their perception and actually, it probably suited us, because a lot of the focus wasn’t on us.”

    Although the loss of promising young centre Susie Howie, who had foot surgery last week, will be felt, Megan Fleiner returns from a year at the Australian Institute of Sport as a cover for Michelle Benison and Ingrid Dick in the mid-court.

    Veteran Roselee Jencke has thought better of retiring and will exert the bench pressure on talented defensive duo Liz Taverner and national player of the year Janine Lynch. Toss in the incomparable Simone McKinnis on the wing and it is a defence with few, if any, peers.

    At the other end, Eloise Southby should continue her march towards higher honors, Southby and goal attack Dani Arnott having shown great poise and composure during Victoria’s drought- breaking national title win.

    As ever, apart from defending champion Sydney, the main threats will be the South Australian clubs Contax and Garville, although both will probably be missing key players in Vicki Wilson and Michelle Fielke.

    Yet, apart from team aspirations, there is also the personal motivation of national selection. In May, the Australian open team for the one-off match against South Africa and the three- Test series against New Zealand will be chosen, as will the under-21 team for the World Youth Cup in Canada in August.

    ROUND ONE DRAW, Waverley Netball Stadium – Friday, 1 March: Adelaide Garville v AIS, 7pm; Adelaide Contax v Sydney Cenovis, 9pm. Saturday, 2 March: Fremantle Pumas v Sydney Electricity, 7pm; Melbourne-Waverley Pumas v Queensland Mac-attacks, 9pm.


    Sydney Electricity: Last year: 1st.

    Comment: Same old faces – Kenny, Devery, Finnan, Dalwood, Cusack et al – as well as an even bigger and more formidable Jo Morgan to contend with under the offensive post. Some ageing legs, sure, but again one of the teams to beat.

    Melbourne-Waverley Pumas: Last year: 2nd.

    Comment: Surprised many last year with a gallant run to the grand final. One of the stoutest defences in the competition, complemented by the ever-improving Eloise Southby in attack, and should be better for last year’s experience.

    Adelaide Garville: Last year: 3rd.

    Comment: The temporary loss of Michelle den Dekker (formerly Fielke) to motherhood will dilute Garville’s chances under new coach Deborah Miller despite a formidable front four of Borlase, Avellino, Abbott and Grant.

    Adelaide Contax: Last year: 4th.

    Comment: Champion Vicki Wilson’s recovery, or otherwise, from knee surgery will be crucial to the chances of the 1994 champion.

    Kathyrn Harby will lead from the back but, despite Jacqui Delaney’s promise, the troubles could be up front.

    Sydney Cenovis: Last year: 5th.

    Comment: Ten of its 16 squad members are under 20, including imported shooter Catherine Cox, but Liz Ellis, Marianne McCormack (nee Murphy) and Catriona Wagg still represent an experienced core. Competitive at worst.

    Australian Institute of Sport: Last year: 7th.

    Comment: One of the big losers in next year’s move to an extended national league. Victorian import Shelley O’Donnell will lead its final fling in the big-time, with World Youth Cup selection a tasty carrot for several squad members.

    Queensland Mac-Attacks: Last year: 8th.

    Comment: Last year’s wooden-spooner has recruited Victorian defender Peta Kennedy to fill the import’s role initially earmarked for South African shooter Irene Van Dyk. Recent form in Melbourne unimpressive. Prefer others.

    Fremantle Pumas: Last year: -.

    Comment: The only new team in the competition, replacing the habitually mediocre Perth Bullets, and coached by former national player Elsma Merillo. Familiar names include Kylie Dirou, Sally Ironmonger and Chelsey Mardon.

    Pumas keen to get ball rolling and go one better
    The Age

    Australia’s top netballers are in Melbourne this weekend to kick off the 1996 Mobil League – and they are desperate to start competing.

    “We just want to get out there and start playing,” said Melbourne Waverley Pumas’ Liz Taverner. We’re so excited, we’ll be throwing balls everywhere.” Taverner, 23, a member of the Australian squad, this week received a $2000 scholarship in the prime ministerial women’s sport awards and is heavily into promoting women in sport at primary schools and conducting clinics.

    This is the last Mobil League in its present form. Next year it will be a bigger league, and Victoria will have two teams, instead of one.

    The Melbourne Waverley Pumas surprised the rest of the competition last year by finishing second. This year, they are keen to go one better.

    Their first match is against the Queensland Mac-attacks at the Waverley Netball Stadium tomorrow night. The Pumas are the favorites after a convincing win over the Queenslanders in the Dairy Farmer’s Cup a fortnight ago.

    The Pumas will be playing against one of their own – defender Peta Kennedy, recently imported by the Queensland Mac-attacks.

    “It’ll be a bit weird,” said Taverner.

    There are eight teams in the competition. Defending champion Energy Australia (formerly Sydney Electricity) will be the team to watch. South Australian clubs ETSA Contax and QUIT Garville are also strong, but will be missing key players Vicki Wilson and Michelle den Dekker (formerly Fielke).

    It all starts tonight at 7 pm. The competition ends on 27 April.

    ROUND ONE – Waverley Netball Stadium: Today: QUIT Garville v AIS, 7pm; ETSA Contax v Sydney Cenovis, 9pm. Tomorrow: Fremantle Pumas v Energy Australia, 7pm; Melbourne Waverley Pumas v Qld Mac-attacks, 9pm.


    ABC, 5 pm

    NETBALL has frequently been likened to rugby union. Those who watch it do so because they enjoy the purity of the game. Typically, these same people hate the hype of basketball and rugby league.

    But times they are a changin’. Rugby has turned professional and from next year (gasp!) netball will also move onwards and upwards.

    The present eight-week Mobil League competition, whose grand final is played tonight in Adelaide, will be extended, becoming a promotion-friendly national league.

    The capital city-based teams will boast generic names (such as North Sydney) and the players will be selected from State “pools”.

    Soon there will be national league merchandise for sale: North Sydney netball shirts, Carissa Dalwood netballs, Vicki Wilson mugs and Simone McKinnis key rings. It seems netball, albeit at its own measured pace, is heading down the professional track.

    For the moment, though, Australia’s most popular women’s team sport still revels in its amateur status and the Mobil League remains netball’s annual showcase event. So if you have never watched netball before, this is the time.

    Australia is the world’s leading netball nation and its players are athletes in every sense of the word: lithe, dynamic and unbelievably quick on their feet.

    Taking you through the centre court intercepts will be commentators Steve Robilliard and former national captain Anne Sargeant.

    Clubs in turmoil amid fierce backlash against radical changes
    Heather Smith
    Sydney Morning Herald

    Australia is the world’s No 1 in netball, but this supremacy may be under threat as players, coaches and officials rebel against the ruling body’s planned revamp of the sport, writes HEATHER SMITH .

    WITH HER cool head and incisive breaks in the goal circle, Vicki Wilson has engineered some memorable wins for the world champion Australian netball team.

    But the Brisbane-based national vice-captain believes the game she has dominated during the past decade has started to spin out of her control.

    At the root of her worries is the new national league proposed by the sport’s governing body, Netball Australia. The plans include radical changes to the structure of the present Mobil League which strike at the heart of netball’s philosophies.

    According to NA, club teams will be replaced by permanent franchises, run by the State associations, with generic names such as North Sydney, utilising teams drawn from pools of elite local players.

    The immensely strong club system that has propelled Australia to the pinnacle of the international game has effectively been shunned as NA searches for commercial success.

    Wilson and other members of the netball community are upset by the proposals. They question not the ultimate goal – elite netballers have long-awaited a fully-fledged national league – but the method that has been chosen to achieve it.

    Serious concerns have developed because the NA board has formalised details of the league without significant input from its member organisations and other individuals.

    Wilson says she and many others with a vested interest in the formation of a national league have received little information on the issue from NA and no opportunity to comment on it. Only evaluation reports on the Mobil League and its future have been sought by NA from competing clubs.

    For 31-year-old Wilson, the idea of her netball fortunes being dictated by a draft system fills her with horror.

    Wilson argues that netball, as an amateur sport, has no right to establish a player draft.

    “We play netball for the challenge and also for the camaraderie we have with our club teammates; but this way you go where you’re told and you don’t receive any recompense for it,” Wilson said.

    “Why would that be attractive to players? We’re effectively being drafted, but for no money. This isn’t what I want to do.”

    WILSON’S concerns are shared by the coach of the Randwick-based Energy Australia, Carole Sykes, and the coach of the Melbourne Puma , Norma Plummer.

    Rumours that further details of the national league are to be decided at a NA board meeting tonight have prompted Randwick and Melbourne to consider ways of blocking the association’s plans.

    Both coaches say that confusion is widespread throughout the Mobil League, with State-held team licences, player pools and the dropping of the Australian Institute of Sport from the competition the most controversial issues.

    “We haven’t been told much about the new national league – just what was in the press release sent out (by NA) last month, and since then we haven’t heard anything more,” Sykes said. “We’re definitely concerned that not enough research has gone into this and we’d like to offer some input.”

    Plummer, who emphasised that she and Melbourne Puma were “very much committed to a national league”, expressed disappointment that her club would not have an opportunity to bid for a franchise licence.

    She said her team’s strength and depth came from the Melbourne club’s 64-year history and she doubted whether a State-run, generically named team would be able to generate the same passion – from players and fans alike – as a club-based side.

    Confusion about the status of pooled playes and whether they would be allowed to compete in the State League competition was “making it very scary”.

    “Take 40 of the best players out of the State League, which is the primary feeder system for elite netball, and you’re weakening it severely,” she said.

    NETBALL Australia’s revamping of the league has also been criticised by a former leading administrator, Wilma Shakespear, primarily responsible for establishing the first national league in 1985 while she was head coach of netball at the AIS.

    Shakespear said it was “dangerous” for NA to rush into decisions about the league.

    “Giving MOs (member organisations) licences for franchises is flat-out unfair, unrealistic and not the way of doing business in the ’90s,” Shakespear said. “This (national) league is an example of how you can be sent bankrupt.”

    Netball Australia’s national executive director, Pam Smith, said the new league would enable the sport to develop a stronger spectator and sponsor base in each State, because teams would be permanent rather than changing annually.

    Smith said critics of the league were making assumptions without knowing all the details of changes to the existing competition. But she acknowledged that NA had not kept State associations fully informed of its progress.

    “(The new league) has caused concern because we haven’t dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s,” Smith said.

    • Posts: 341

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    Feb 4, 2007

    Thanks Ian – wish I’d been following netball,back then!

    • Posts: 80

    Member since:
    Aug 1, 2013

    1994 Australian National Mobile Netball Super League
    Grand Final – Adelaide Contax vs Adelaide Garville

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