Starkey signs with Mathoura netball
ROHAN Starkey has returned to Mathoura with plans of taking the Timbercutters to the playoffs of the Picola and District Netball League.
After a successful stint with Echuca United — taking the Eagles to fifth place on the Murray Netball League ladder with almost an entirely new roster — Starkey has moved back to where it all began. Growing up, Starkey began playing netball at Mathoura at age eight.
From there he played and coached for another 20 years before making the short drive south to Echuca United as A grade coach.
And now, the 34-year-old has returned wanting to take his boyhood club to the top of the PDNL.
But Starkey won’t be relying on the same youthful exuberance that was seen on the courts of Echuca United this time around. ‘‘I’ll have a similar approach, so yes and no,’’ Starkey said.
‘‘I talked to a couple of friends about what I wanted to do at the club and I think this time around I will be really looking for a mixture of youth and experience.
‘‘You need experience in any team really. We had only one or two players with a bit of experience, only a few really good netball brains in the team last year, so we’ll be looking for a good mixture,’’ he said.
Starkey said he held no grudge with Echuca United, and that he enjoyed his time in the Murray Netball League — it was just time to move back home.
‘‘I’m just hoping to get their A grade team back to being a super competitive one, because they have been struggling a bit.
‘‘It’s all a bit early for (a recruitment drive) just yet. I’ll start to get the recruitment hat on in the next few weeks though.
‘‘Finals will be the goal for Mathoura next year. The league is sticking with a top eight, so if we didn’t make the top eight I’d be pretty disappointed.
‘‘If we can add just a few players we’ll be right there. We want to play that fantastic four-quarter netball that I know we can,’’ he said.