Fowler-Reid among high-pow­ered Sun­shine Girls ad­di­tions

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS - Robert Bai­ley Gleaner Writer

STAR SHOOTER Jhaniele Fowler-Reid is among three play­ers who have been added to the Ja­maica Sun­shine Girls team to this year’s Fast5 World Se­ries, re­plac­ing Sherema Ster­ling, Shan­tal Slater, and Zonasha Hinds, who were de­nied US visas two weeks ago.

Former cap­tain Malysha Kelly and vet­eran player Paula Thomp­son are the other play­ers who have been brought into the Sun­shine Girls team for the tour­na­ment, which will be held in Melbourne, Aus­tralia , from Oc­to­ber 28-29.

Fowler-Reid had ini­tially in­di­cated to the Sun­shine Girls coach­ing staff that she would only be avail­able for the Caribbean Net­ball Cham­pi­onships and not the Fast5 Se­ries as both tour­na­ments would be held in the same month, which would have caused her to miss a num­ber of classes at the Mico Uni­ver­sity Col­lege, where she is cur­rently study­ing.

How­ever, the Caribbean tour­na­ment, which was sched­uled for Oc­to­ber 8-16 in St Lu­cia, was can­celled last month due to the un­avail­abil­ity of some of the teams, and Fowler-Reid has since in­di­cated her will­ing­ness to rep­re­sent the coun­try in the Fast5 com­pe­ti­tion.

Kelly and Thomp­son were also mem­bers of the squad pre­par­ing for the Caribbean Cham­pi­onships and not the Fast5 tour­na­ment.

Com­mu­ni­ca­tions direc­tor of Net­ball Ja­maica, Wayne Lewis, said the ad­di­tion of the three play­ers would add a lot of strength and depth to the Sun­shine Girls unit, who will be aim­ing to win the cham­pi­onships for the first time.

“I think that with Jhaniele Fowler-Reid in our team, our chances must be bet­ter be­cause she is an ex­cel­lent player,” said Lewis.

“She would have been there from the out­set if she had made her­self avail­able, (but) she de­cided to play in the Caribbean Cham­pi­onships in­stead based on her school com­mit­ment,” he said.

“It augers well for us be­cause they are ex­cel­lent play­ers and they are very in­flu­en­tial play­ers in the team, and they have been around Ja­maica’s net­ball for quite some time, so it can only put us in a much bet­ter po­si­tion in terms of strength­en­ing our team.Our ex­pec­ta­tions have been height­ened go­ing into the tour­na­ment,” Lewis added.

Lewis also con­firmed that Fowler-Reid would cap­tain the Sun­shine Girls team at the cham­pi­onships Down Un­der.

“She ac­cepted the chal­lenge of lead­ing the team to the Fast5, and we are very happy about that. She is very re­spected in the team, very in­flu­en­tial, and the play­ers look up to her a great deal, so we are quite happy that she will be there.”

FOWLER-REID

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