The opportunity to wear the Black Dress will go on the line when 25 Silver Fern hopefuls go head-to-head at the upcoming trials.
The trials will take place in Auckland from Monday 31 July – Friday 4 August with the Silver Ferns and Silver Ferns Development Squads to be announced on August 7.
From the Silver Ferns squad, a team for the Netball Quad Series and Taini Jamison Trophy will also be announced.
To be eligible to trial, players needed to have played for a New Zealand team in the 2017 ANZ Premiership.
Silver Ferns Triallists
NAME - 2017 TEAM
Monica Falkner - WBOP Magic
Bailey Mes - SKYCITY Mystics
Tiana Metuarau - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Te Paea Selby-Rickit - Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Maria Tutaia - SKYCITY Mystics
Maia Wilson - Northern Stars
NAME - 2017 TEAM
Gina Crampton - Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Kayla Cullen - Northern Stars
Shannon Francois - Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Wendy Frew - Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Claire Kersten - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Erikana Pedersen - Silvermoon Tactix
Grace Rasmussen - WBOP Magic
Samantha Sinclair - WBOP Magic
Whitney Souness - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Elisapeta Toeava - SKYCITY Mystics
NAME - 2017 TEAM
Karin Burger - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Temalisi Fakahokotau - Silvermoon Tactix
Katrina Grant - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Kelly Jury - WBOP Magic
Phoenix Karaka - Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse
Storm Purvis - SKYCITY Mystics
Michaela Sokolich-Beatson - SKYCITY Mystics
Zoe Walker - Silvermoon Tactix
Jane Watson - Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
NAME – 2017 TEAM
Ellie Bird - Silvermoon Tactix
Jamie Hume – Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Aliyah Dunn – Netball South (Beko Netball League)
Jennifer O’Connell – Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
Abby Erwood – Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel
The NZU21 team has gathered in Auckland for a pre-departure camp ahead of Netball World Youth Cup Gaborone 2017 (NWYC2017), July 8-16.
After hard-fought ANZ Premiership and Beko Netball League campaigns, the athletes and staff will be looking to put the finishing touches on their preparation.
NZU21 head coach Kiri Wills says the feeling within the group is positive.
“Everyone is getting excited; we’ve been working hard for a long time and can’t wait to get into it,” Wills said.
“We’ve got a three day camp in Auckland before we hop on a plane to South Africa where we’ll complete our preparation and freshen up for a few days before our first match in Gaborone.
“Our focus has, and always will be, on taking things one game at a time, putting together clinical performances against our opposition no matter who they are, and like Team NZ did – learn from each performance and keep building.”
The NZU21 team will enter NWYC2017 battle hardened after a number of the 12 took on key roles within their ANZ Premiership teams.
“I’ve been really impressed with how they’ve all stood up in critical moments in massive matches for their teams,” she said.
“Players like Tiana [Metuarau] for the Pulse and Monica [Falkner] for the Magic nailing some big shots, and our captain Michaela Sokolich-Beatson picking up crucial turnover ball for the Mystics.
“It has been great to see the New Zealand Netball public get behind them and support this next generation. These players are young, but they’ve done work; they are strong, hard athletes and we’re all looking forward to representing New Zealand in Gaborone.”
NWYC2017 will be played in Gaborone, Botswana from July 8-16. The NZU21s are defending world champions.
They have been drawn in Pool A against Sri Lanka, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Samoa, with their first match against Northern Ireland at 8am (local time), Saturday 8 July.
Michaela Sokolich-Beatson (C): GD/WD/GK
Charlotte Elley (VC): C/WD/WA
Aliyah Dunn: GS/GA
Abby Erwood: GK/GD
Monica Falkner: GA/GS
Fa’amu Ioane: WA/C/WD/GD
Kelly Jury: GK
Kate Lloyd: GK
Tiana Metuarau: GA/GS
Kimiora Poi: C/WA
Mila Reuelu-Buchanan: WA/C
Maia Wilson: GS
International Netball Federation Appointed Umpires/Officials – NZL
Fay Meiklejohn (Umpire Appointments Panel)
NZU21s NWYC2017 Match Schedule (all games shown in local time):
Note: Botswana is -10hours behind New Zealand
Day 1, Saturday 8 July: 8am, New Zealand v Northern Ireland
Day 2, Sunday 9 July: 2pm, Samoa v New Zealand
Day 3, Monday 10 July: 10am, Scotland v New Zealand
Day 4, Tuesday 11 July: REST DAY
Day 5, Wednesday 12 July: 9am, New Zealand v Sri Lanka
Days 6 – 9: Finals (Pools reconfigured)
The Beko League development netball series Grand Final is this coming Sunday in Auckland between the Central and Mainland teams.
Central go in to the final as top qualifier and unbeaten through 10 matches, having done so using 18 players. Five of the 18 have been current secondary schoolgirls, Ainsleyana Puleiata and Renee Savai'inaea (both St Mary’s College), Danielle Tafili (Sacred Heart College, Lower Hutt), Antonia Hei Hei (Manukura) and Jessica Pease (Palmerston North Girls’ High School).
Both Antonia and Jessica are defenders, both are year 13 players captain their school teams and both were recently in the Aotearoa Maori Netball International Secondary School (AMNISS) team that won the International Schools Challenge in Fiji. Both also made their Beko League debuts in Queen’s Birthday Monday’s penultimate round match against the Northern Marvels at home in Palmerston North.
Speaking with College Sport Media, Antonia and Jessica were excited to play their first games.
“Stepping up to that higher level was definitely nerve-racking but being in front of my home crowd was settling for me and I really enjoyed it, said Antonia.
“The girls in the team made it a really welcoming atmosphere,” said Jessica, who joined the squad for the first time for the weekend of her debut match. “It was a really big surprise for me being called in for this match at the business end of the season. I was only there for the Friday night training and then we went into camp on Sunday and played on Monday. It was just the first catch and pass that I was most worried about.”
Antonia has been training with the team, other than the time that she was away with the New Zealand Maori team on their successful Fiji trip. “It’s been a high level of intensity, but I’ve learnt a lot from that as well and coach Nat [Natalie Milicich] has been really good.” Training has included playing practice games against the Pulse squad.
Antonia has been in teams that have beaten Australia in finals three years in a row, for the AMNISS team in Kuala Lumpur in 2015, for the NZSS side in Auckland in 2016 and with AMNISS again last month in Fiji.
For Jessica, this was her first trip away overseas with a New Zealand team. “It was a whole new experience for a lot of us. I had been in the team last year as well, so it was good to beat Australia after losing to them last year in this same team.”
In fact, the last several weeks have been big for Jessica. “At the trials for the AMNISS team [Easter] everyone was so close and I had no idea if I was going to get in or not. Then to get in and then win the tournament and then be called into the Beko team upon my return was really cool.”
Both players played for their school teams at last October’s NZSS championships in Lower Hutt, with Manukura finishing third and Palmerston North Girls’ High School ending up 10th of 16 teams.
Antonia says that Manukura netball is looking up. “In the past years we had finished fifth to ninth so third last year was close. We only lost to champions St Kent’s by 5 goals [33-38] in our semi-final and this year we’ll be confident of going for the final.”
Manukura has a settled team this year too. “We have only lost two players, so we are still a well-gelled team.”
Two of Antonia’s teammates also recently joined her in the AMNISS team at the Fiji tournament. Wing attack Braxton Te Riini (Year 13) and goal attack Princess Tomoana (Year 12)
Goal attack/wing attack Diahn Strickland made the NZSS team last year, but she has been out injured for the first part of this year so wasn’t available for the AMNISS squad.
Both Manukura and PNGHS play in both the Manawatu club and secondary school competitions on Tuesday nights and Saturdays respectively.
Manukura field two teams in the club competition, the school side and one made up of mostly old girls. Antonia, Braxton and Diahn all play in the old girls team. “Just to stretch ourselves a bit more and also to develop some new players in our group because the majority of our school side are older.”
Jessica is co-captain of the PNGHS team, along with another key player Sisavaii Muliaga. But with Sisavaii away with the Samoan U21 team a lot, Jessica is the team’s principal captain at the moment.
PNGHS have lost more school leavers than Manukura. This year their squad has been increased from 10 to 12 players, half of whom are new players this year and half being year 11s.
Both schools are working towards the Lower North Island Tournament in New Plymouth, where a top five finish there will see them qualify for the NZSS tournament in Rotorua in October.
As well as finishing third at nationals last year, Manukura are the defending Lower North Island champions.
PNGHS are confident of qualifying. “I think we have the skill to get to nationals, it is just us believing in ourselves and knowing that we can get be a national side,” said Jessica.
Netball is Antonia’s main sport, saying she plays other sports but only socially. She is originally from Auckland, but came down with her family to Manukura and Palmerston North three years ago. Next year she hopes to study teaching but isn’t sure where yet.
“It depends how netball goes, wherever that takes me will probably what university I end up at but I am happy to wherever there are opportunities.”
Jessica also plays rugby and athletics. “Last year I was lucky enough to get into the Manawatu women’s wider sevens squad, I only played regionals but I’ve learnt so much and am looking forward to playing more rugby in the future.”
“I do a bit of athletics, when I am not playing netball or rugby. Earlier this year I broke the PNGHS 100m hurdles record and I went to North Islands and made the final, finishing sixth.”
From Palmerston North, Jessica isn’t sure yet what she’ll be doing next year, but sporting success could dictate that one.
This weekend, both Antonia and Jessica will be watching the Beko final between Central and Mainland with interest.
It’s always good to beat the Aussies, so Napier Girls’ High School’s Jaydi Taylor-Chaffey and the Aotearoa Maori Netball International Secondary School (AMNISS) team were naturally thrilled to beat them twice in the space of a few days recently at the International U19 Schools Challenge tournament in Fiji.
The AMNISS side played the Australians once in pool play and won 30-26 and then met them again in the grand final and this time stretched their advantage to 12 goals, winning 40-28.
Vice-captain and Year 13 player Jaydi said that the team exceeded their expectations.
“I was quite nervous actually, I wasn’t expecting at all that we were going to clean sweep the tournament,” she told College Sport Media.
“I was expecting Aussie to be a bit better than that. They were good, but last year they were way stronger and so I was expecting more of the same,” she added.
Jaydi was also in the AMNISS team last year that lost to Australia 24-42 in Auckland before almost going on to beat the New Zealand Secondary School team in the same tournament – losing 28-29.
How come the margin of victory over Australia grew between the two games in Fiji?
“I just think that we had such a good warm-up in our final. We were just really prepared to go out there and win, we felt way stronger, way more focused and it all came together for us.
“In contrast we had a bit of a poor warm-up in the first round when we played them.”
The recent tournament in Fiji ran from five days from 16-20 May.
The AMNISS side won all eight round-robin games before beating Fiji in the semi-final and then Australia in the final.
The team improved steadily as a cohesive unit as the tournament progressed.
“As a team we built really well throughout the week, I feel like our first game was a bit niggly as we hadn’t really had any time together playing as a team. But throughout the week we improved more.
“The Fiji team that we played in the semi-final [winning 36-21] we played first up [winning 47-24] and I feel like we improved more from that first game.
“We only had a few trainings together beforehand so we bonded together really quickly and the result was us winning the tournament.”
The AMNISS team was made up of players of different ages. “It was really good developing the young ones, they are so talented at such a young age and its awesome seeing them all come through.”
There were two Hawke’s Bay players in the team, Jaydi and Year 12 Wing Attack/Goal Attack Asher Grapes from Hastings’ Girls’ High School. There were four from nearby Manawatu, including three Manukura players.
Back in New Zealand, Jaydi is busy training and playing netball twice a week.
The Napier Girls’ High School Senior A team play in the local secondary school competition on Tuesday nights and in the Hawke’s Bay club competition on Friday nights.
One of her teammates and good friends is NZSS player Briana Stephenson, while another player to look out for coming through the Napier GHS ranks is Year 10 midcourter Paris Petera.
Napier GHS is gearing up for the Lower North Island Tournament later this year in New Plymouth, where the top five finishing teams from that qualify for the main draw in the NZSS tournament in October in Rotorua.
“That is one reason why are playing in the club grade as well, to get that extra bit of competition.”
Last year the five schools that qualified for nationals were Manukura, St Mary’s College, Wellington East Girls’ College, Palmerston North Girls’ High School and Wellington Girls’ College.
Midcourt is Jaydi’s favoured position but her extra height dictates she also plays a lot as a defender in local teams. She also plays basketball for her school team.
Also coming up are games for the Hawke’s Bay U19 representative team. This coming weekend there’s a rep tournament in Palmerston North.
Jaydi’s netball role models include Kayla Cullen, Phoenix Karaka and Katrina Grant, amongst other Silver Ferns.
Mum and dad played competitive netball and rugby respectively so they’re always great support. She thanks her netball coaches, Becs Gabel and Dan Short (AMNISS) and Annemarie Kupa (NGHS) for their support.
Jaydi is undecided about what she’s doing next year, weighing up heading to Auckland or Wellington for university and netball.
The AMNISS team that won the International Schools Challenge in Fiji was:
Storm Collings-Gilmer, (St Orans College). Tayla Earle, (Saint Kentigern College), Asher Grapes, (Hastings Girls High School), Antonia Heihei, (Manukura), Tamara Leoni, (Epsom Girls Grammar), Paris Lokotui, (Queen Margaret College), Parris Mason, (New Plymouth Girls High), Jessica Pease, (Palmerston North Girls), Jaydi Taylor-Chaffey, (Napier Girls High), Braxton Te Riini, (Manukura), Princess Tomoana, (Manukura), Khiarna Williams, (Trident High School)
Their results were:
1. vs Fiji U19 - Win 47 - 24
2. vs Auckland Tonga - Win 45 - 26
3. vs Indigenous Australia - Win 57 - 16
4. vs South Africa - Win 43 - 15
5. vs Fiji Secondary Schools - Win 58 - 17
6. vs Auckland Samoa - Win 59 - 21
7. vs Fijiana FANZ - Win 60 - 22
8. vs Australia - Win 30 - 26
9. Semi Final vs Fiji U19 - Win 36 - 21
10. Final vs Australia - Win 40 - 28
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