Scorcher start for season

NETBALL: Warriors Goal Attack Kate Deakin lines up a shot on goal in her team's A Grade win over YCW.

NETBALL: Warriors Goal Attack Kate Deakin lines up a shot on goal in her team's A Grade win over YCW.

Well, I’m not sure Saturday’s weather was quite the welcome back to netball we were hoping for but we survived!

I’m pleased to say the forecast for this coming Saturday is looking much more bearable although you may need your umbrella for a completely different reason.

I’m pleased to say the day did start off with our youngest netballers taking in the court in our 7 and Unders and 9 and Unders.

Both grades consisting of players taking the court for the first time.

These grades did struggle for numbers last year and our 7 and Unders had to play a modified competition due to lack of teams however it is great to six teams full in each grade.

I always love watching these girls. They have no expectations other than to have fun.

There is no rivalries, no demands.

If one child falls over, there are 13 others all running to see if she is okay.

And they don’t even care if they don’t score.

If you are a coach or parent and you are having trouble with some player egos, I urge you to get them to come out and watch these young ladies.

It might help to remind them of what playing a team sport is really about.

In the junior grades we saw some vast differences in scoring margins which is typical of the first few rounds as we fine tune each team’s capabilities.

It’s important to have a fair and competitive competition wherever possible and team nominations will be reassessed after Round 3.

It’s fair to say some of our senior teams probably felt the heat a little more in the afternoon which did see two games abandoned as it became a little too much for some.

It certainly didn’t affect our spectator numbers though and on behalf of players, parents and coaches I do thank those who ran back and forth to fill up drink bottles, grab ice blocks and hold umbrellas over our players during the breaks to try and give them a little relief.

From grading there were definitely a few teams on our radar in the senior grades that may stand out a little too much, however, the scores tell of quite an even competition and most didn’t have it all their own way.

C grade, which seemed to be the most even competition of all grades, saw Kiwi with a 10 goal win over YCW.

Unfortunately this game did need to be relocated at one stage due to a suspected dislocated knee injury to one of the players.

We wish her a speedy recovery and hope to see her back out on the court soon.  

At the opposite end of the scale a slow starting Roopena were nine goals down in the first quarter against True Blue.

A big effort in the third quarter though saw them take the lead and after a battle in the fourth, come away with a two-goal win.

To be honest though it was the B grade where there were the most surprises for me.

Ravens Pink were dominant over Kiwi Black 52-29.

Taking nothing away from Ravens Pink who have much of their B grade team from last year, I would have expected this game to be much closer and I’ll even admit I would have tipped Kiwi to take the win.

It’s great to see Ashlyn Warren named in the B grade team this year.

I have watched her from juniors and I have always thought she was a quiet achiever.

Great to see her being rewarded for her effort.

True Blue Blue took on their sister team in True Blue White in what was a very tight battle.

True Blue Blue just keeping their nose in front at the end 42-40.

The other game which I watched in interest was Warriors versus Ravens Black.

Warriors definitely had the more experience and seemed to have the higher skilled players on paper but the score sheet showed a different story.

Whilst Warriors won the game in the end 40-33, Ravens Black showed some great competitiveness and skill themselves and even held the lead at one stage.

I definitely think they could cause a few upsets if underestimated.

This year we only have a four team A grade competition which, whilst a little disappointing, will hopefully give some clubs the chance to rebuild and focus on developing some skilled players, bringing more to the competition next season.

While there were probably no surprises in winners on the day, the competition was more even than I had expected.

Warriors took the win over YCW 55-40 although they did take the opportunity to rotate several B grade players through who must have performed well according to the umpires who included them in their chosen best players.

This year we only have a four team A grade competition which, whilst a little disappointing, will hopefully give some clubs the chance to rebuild and focus on developing some skilled players, bringing more to the competition next season.

Kiwi also took the win over a young True Blue side 63-45.

I’m looking forward to what this weekend brings particularly in the 15 and Under Division 1 which will see True Blue taking on Kiwi.

Both had relatively convincing wins in their first game over YCW and Warriors Black respectively.

Warriors Black and Roopena will both be looking to come back from big losses in their first games when they verse each other this round.

In the B grade it’s all about who will have bragging rights come the final whistle with YCW Yellow taking on their sister team in YCW Green and Kiwi Red taking on Kiwi Black in the B grade.

And finally, the A grade will see Warriors take on Kiwi in what I’m sure will be a very competitive clash and what I think will set the tone for the season. Potentially an early look at the GF here.