Young netballer is one to watch
Holly Fowler has led the New Zealand Secondary Schools netball team to a third straight International Schoolgirls Netball Challenge title.
The year 12 Mt Albert Grammar School student has represented the New Zealand schoolgirls’ team three times but this was her first year as captain.
‘‘I couldn’t believe the honour was being offered to me, and then after it sank in I felt so proud to take on the respon- sibility,’’ she says.
The team went through the tournament unbeaten, downing School Sport Australia 39-30 in the final on Friday night in Adelaide.
Holly, 16, puts the squad’s success down to the great team culture the coaches have created.
‘‘Having a great connection among the girls went through on to the court and we constantly supported each other,’’ she says.
Holly was one of four Mt Albert Grammar girls who played at the tournament and on Monday night the MAGS premier netball team wrapped up the College Netball Final for the third year in a row, beating Auckland Girls Grammar 37-26.
Holly was named player of the match for her defensive work in the circle.
Coach of the New Zea- land Secondary Schools side Marianne Delaney says Holly is the real deal both on and off the court.
‘‘It’s Holly’s third consecutive year in the team and she’s not even in her final year of school yet,’’ Delaney says.
‘‘She always plays to the best of her ability, she’s intelligent, thoughtful, perceptive and has the respect of all the girls in the team.’’
Despite her success on the netball court Holly still sees her studies as a priority.
‘‘Balance is necessary, finishing off my level threes so I can get into the university of my choice is key,’’ she says.
The 1.81-metre tall defender has set herself the goal of one day donning the Silver Ferns’ black dress and playing in the ANZ Championship.
Holly is quick to acknowledge those who have been instrumental in her netball career so far.
Silver Fern Casey Kopua is someone Holly looks up to.
She has also learnt a lot from former MAGS teammate Jamie-Lee Price and her Mt Albert Grammar coaches Te Aroha Keenan and Paula Smith.
‘‘The culture has collectively shaped me into the player and person I am today.’’
Mary-anne: Beautiful views from Mt Eden.
Future star: New Zealand Secondary Schools netball captain Holly Fowler hopes to play for the Silver Ferns one day.