By­field ex­pects Sun­shine Girls to ‘pull weight’ at Fast5

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS - Liv­ingston Scott Gleaner Writer

A10-MEM­BER Sun­shine Girls team de­parted the is­land on Satur­day for Melbourne, Aus­tralia, where they will com­pete in the 2016 Fast5 World Net­ball Series.

Althea By­field, who is in her first-ever role as cap­tain of a Ja­maica net­ball team, says all the play­ers must play at their best if they are to do well at the cham­pi­onship.

“I never thought that this (cap­taincy) would have been pos­si­ble. I can’t be­lieve I was se­lected, but I am over­whelmed to lead this won­der­ful group of fe­males and I am just ex­cited,” By­field said prior to the team’s de­par­ture.

“But I have been putting in the hard work and I have gone over and be­yond. I have made a lot of sac­ri­fices and I have worked re­ally hard for this tour­na­ment and I am re­ally look­ing for­ward to it,” she said.

“I ex­pect ev­ery­one to pull their weight. Ev­ery­one has in­vested their time and they are com­mit­ted to the task, so it would be a waste of time to go ‘down un­der’ and ev­ery­one not per­form to the best of their abil­ity. So I ex­pect ev­ery­one to go out and do their best,” she con­tin­ued.

MUL­TI­PLE MATCHUPS

Ja­maica open against South Africa in the two-day tour­na­ment this com­ing Satur­day and will also face Aus­tralia and Malawi on that same day. The following day, the Sun­shine Girls will play another two matches – against New Zealand and Eng­land – in their at­tempt to ad­vance to the play-offs.

The squad in­cludes two new­com­ers Mem­bers of the Sun­shine Girls net­ball team gather be­fore leav­ing for Melbourne, Aus­tralia, to par­tic­i­pate in the Fast5 series set for Oc­to­ber 29-30. The team, cap­tained by vet­eran player Althea By­field (back row, left), left the is­land on Satur­day.

in Gezelle Al­li­son and Tr­is­hana Han­son, while veter­ans By­field and Kacey Ever­ing have been re­called.

“We have been train­ing for six months and I know the other top-five coun­tries in the world have been do­ing the same, so I have to be there to an­a­lyse and

assess each team. I can’t say much (on win­ning title) right now,” said By­field.

“But it’s (Fast5) ba­sic net­ball, the only dif­fer­ence is the speed and level of in­ten­sity. You don’t have enough time to catch your breath be­cause as the ball scores, it’s com­ing right back,”

she said.

Ja­maica’s best fin­ish at a Fast5 tour­na­ment was their sil­ver­medal plac­ing in 2009.

SQUAD: Althea By­field (cap­tain), Anna-Kaye Grif­fiths, Shantel Slater, Vanessa Walker, Ni­cole Aiken-Pin­nock, Kasey Ever­ing, Van­gelee Wil­liams,

Ni­cole Dixon, Gezelle Al­li­son and Tr­is­hana Han­son. The team is coached by Con­nie Fran­cis and she is as­sisted by Elaine Davis. Also ac­com­pa­ny­ing the team are John Camp­bell (physio) and Net­ball Ja­maica pres­i­dent Paula Da­ley-Mor­ris, who is the head of del­e­ga­tion.

COLLIN REID PHOTO

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