GIANTS Netball is excited to confirm its entire 2018 playing squad, which includes nine athletes returning from the inaugural Suncorp Super Netball season.
Headlining the announcement is the welcome return of injured Captain Kimberlee Green, who ruptured her Anterior Cruciate Ligament early on in the Club’s 2017 campaign. Joining Green on the second year of their contracts is fellow Captain Jo Harten and shooters Kristina Brice and Susan Pettitt, as well as the Club’s inaugural HCF Most Valuable Player Serena Guthrie.
In further great news for the Club, injured Australian defender Kristiana Manu’a will also make her comeback to competitive netball after rupturing her Achilles Tendon last December. Manu’a has been making great in-roads into her recovery and is poised to make her GIANTS debut in Round 1 of the 2018 season.
Head Coach Julie Fitzgerald has also retained the services of defensive duo Sam Poolman and Bec Bulley for 2018; the latter coaxed out of retirement as a permanent replacement player for the injured Manu’a for this season.
Joining the trio on one-year deals is Australian 21/U representatives Jamie-Lee Price and Kiera Austin, who will both travel to Botswana next week to contest the 2017 Netball World Youth Cup. Austin earns her first elite contract having been a GIANTS training partner this season.
“I’m really excited by this playing group because it provides such a depth of coverage across the court,” Fitzgerald said.
“What we’ve seen since teams were reduced from 12 to 10 players is a greater need for diversity, and nine of our 10 athletes can cover two or more positions which gives us incredible versatility and balance.
“Not only does it provide us with more options, it also creates greater competition for starting positions which as a Coach makes you really excited – training goes up a gear as players really push each other for game time.”
Fitzgerald was also really positive about the progress of Green and Manu’a who are both halfway through lengthy rehabilitation periods.
“Both Kim and Kristiana are progressing really, really well, which is incredibly exciting,” she said.
“The late start (to 2018 Suncorp Super Netball*) definitely helps us in that it gives both athletes that little bit extra time to prepare to take the court. But they continue to impress us – Kristiana joined in training towards the end of the season, while Kim has recently started running, so the outlook is positive for their return to court.”
Fitzgerald also made special mention of 2017 team members Toni Anderson, Taylah Davies and permanent replacement player Sarah Wall, for their commitment in the Club’s Foundation year.
“Toni, Taylah and Sarah are all wonderful team players and have been a delight to have around the Club, but unfortunately we can’t take everyone next year,” Fitzgerald said.
“We hope that they will remain involved in the Club in some capacity, but whatever happens we wish them all the very best. They will also forever be members of GIANTS Netball.”
GIANTS Netball will make an announcement on the Club’s 2018 Training Partners in due course.
2018 GIANTS Netball Memberships | Waitlist
2018 Membership renewals will be available later this year, however for those who aren’t Members and wish to sign-up next season why not sign up to our GIANTS Netball Membership Waitlist.
By registering your details, you will receive information about any available 2018 Memberships before it’s announced – don’t delay and sign up today!
2018 GIANTS Netball
Kiera AUSTIN – North Ryde Spirits, Eastwood Ryde Netball Assoc (NSW)
Kristina BRICE – Hassall Grove Netball Club, Mt Druitt Netball Assoc (NSW)
Bec BULLEY – Calivil United Football Netball Club, Lodden Valley League (VIC)
Kimberlee GREEN – Gymea Netball Club, Sutherland Shire Netball Assoc (NSW)
Serena GUTHRIE – Convent Netball Club, Jersey ENG
Jo HARTEN – Tegate Netball Club, East Essex ENG
Kristiana MANU’A – Cabra Vale Diggers Netball Club, Liverpool City Netball Assoc (NSW)
Susan PETTITT – Bega Netball Club, Sapphire Coast Netball Assoc (NSW)
Sam POOLMAN – West Leagues Netball Club, Newcastle Netball Assoc (NSW)
Jamie-Lee PRICE – Bankstown Blues Netball Club, Bankstown City Netball Assoc (NSW)
Head Coach: Julie Fitzgerald – Ku-ring-gai Netball Association (NSW)
*Netball Australia has confirmed that the 2018 Suncorp Super Netball season will commence after the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April next year. Exact dates, including Fixtures and Ticketing, are yet to be announced.