TAKING ON THE WORLD
SHE’S got a reputation as the comebacks queen, now St Clair netballer Paige Hadley is gearing up for the Fast 5 World Series in Melbourne. “It’s exciting,” Hadley said. “It’s the first time it’s been played in Australia. It’s different from a traditional game but fun.”
Hadley will join the Australian team and compete against New Zealand, Malawi, England, Jamaica, and South Africa in the two-day Fast Five Netball World Series in Melbourne from October 29.
Fast Five rules limit the teams to five players in total, feature shorter quarters and allow one-, two- and three-point shots.
Hadley said the game’s modifications put every team on a level play- ing field and often the underdogs come out on top.
“Australia has always been confident in the traditional game, but Malawi plays a different skill,” Hadley said. “The winner is not always the team you would expect. It’s a good challenge. It’s definitely going to lift the profile of the sport.”
At a national level, Hadley is feeling the pressure after being one of the few Swifts players that remained loyal to the side following the revamping of the competition.
“I wasn’t ready to close the chapter on the Swifts yet,” Hadley said.
“We lost some really big players, which was disappointing, but we have got a really good team.
“I have always been a part of a team with five or six international players on the court.
“I wanted a different challenge and going from being one of the younger ones to the oldest is a completely different challenge.
“It’s the perfect time to come together. Our team is definitely going to be competitive in 2017 and I want to be a part of that.”
“This challenge is going to make me a better player and a better person. What I want to be is true to myself.”
Hadley has one piece of advice for young girls facing challenges. “I just think, 100 per cent back yourself and throw everything at it. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”
NSW Swifts veteran Paige Hadley is pulling out the green and gold for the upcoming Fast 5 World Series. Picture: Mark Evans