Organiser will be near the action

TONIGHT'S grand final at 7.30 in the Central Queensland Netball competition is not an opportunity for organiser Natalie Hitchcock to sit back and enjoy the occasion as she will be on court trying to win.

Hitchcock will be in the thick of the action as goalkeeper of the Assassins team as they do battle against Ninjas in the premier league final at CQUniversity.

Both teams are from the Angels Netball Club and that should be a catalyst for intense competition.

The final, of course, brings to a conclusion the short competition run by the newly formed association and Hitchcock said it had proved to be highly successful.

“It's gone really well with great participation and teams joining the competition that haven't played outdoor netball for a while,” she said.

While the quality of netball has been up to a standard organisers expected, Hitchcock said there has also been an opportunity for players to laugh, have fun and socialise.

With the out-of-season tournaments being less intense than the winter competition, teams took the opportunity to experiment and place young players in teams with experienced players and Hitchcock said this had proved to be beneficial.

Philippa Toby took the opportunity to introduce four teams of indigenous players to the sport and Hitchcock hopes they enjoyed the program enough to become regular netballers as a lot have real talent.

Players have caught the eye of Hitchcock during the competition.

Among them has been Jessica Broome.

“She has really lifted her game,” Hitchcock said.

The youngster plays as goal defence or wing defence and has enjoyed the experience of playing with and against more mature players.

“It is just her commitment to the game along with her natural ability,” she added.

Another defensive player who showed potential was Allie Morris who plays her netball with Angels in the B-reserve division during the main season.

“Her game is growing as she is willing to listen,” she said.

Morris is in her mid-20s but still takes advice from more experienced players.

From the Coast, Melissa Minter has caught the eye at goal attack.

“She is shooting at 90% accuracy,” Hitchcock said.

The Social final is at 6.15pm between Fireflies and Stayers.

Following tonight's finals the CQ Netball Association goes into “recess” as players return to clubs for the Rockhampton competition's 2011 season, but Hitchcock said as the program had been so successful it was the intention to run a similar competition starting in October.



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