A COUPLE of fresh faces are set to join the 2021 Australian Diamonds squad, with the squad named on Sunday morning. Some familiar names return to the fold ahead of the upcoming international season, with the Development Squad also named boasting a number of young up and coming players.
Youngsters Amy Parmenter and Sunday Aryang have made their way into the 21-player Diamonds squad for the first time with the pair proving to be lynchpins for their respective Suncorp Super Netball sides. In fact, West Coast Fever have four players named in the squad including defensive stalwart Courtney Bruce and midcourters Jess Anstiss and Verity Charles.
After giving birth at the start of the year, shooting dynamo Gretel Bueta is set to pull on the green and gold dress. She is not alone when it comes to returning favourites with Ash Brazill also named while Maddy Turner has enjoyed a rise in the ranks this season, returning to her damaging best for the Swifts down back credit to her connection with fellow Diamonds star Sarah Klau.
Playing over in New Zealand with Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic did not stop Caitlin Bassett from being selected, with the talented and experienced goal shooter getting the nod once again. There is a good mix of youth and experience inside the goal circle with Cara Koenen, Sophie Garbin, Steph Wood, Bueta and Bassett all named, highlighting the depth and versatility at the hands of selectors and wealth of options come game day.
With plenty of options in attack, the midcourt is also brimming with talent with NSW Swifts powerhouse duo Paige Hadley and Maddy Proud included in the 21-player squad alongside the defensive-minded Jamie-Lee Price and Kate Moloney. Speaking of defence, Kim Jenner has retained her spot in the squad while the ever-reliable Jo Weston is once again amongst the mix.
Many will keep an eye on a couple of injured stars that have been named in the squad with Kiera Austin on the mend from an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury while Liz Watson is still recovering from foot surgery. There were a couple of notable omissions through the midcourt however, with Kelsey Browne, Kim Ravaillion and Gabi Simpson not named in the squad after the trio had impressive seasons for the Magpies and Firebirds respectively. April Brandley did not put her hand up for selection despite having a stellar season with the GIANTS.
2021/2022 Australian Diamonds squad
Jess Anstiss – West Coast Fever
Sunday Aryang – West Coast Fever
Kiera Austin – GIANTS Netball
Caitlin Bassett – Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic
Ash Brazill – Collingwood Magpies
Courtney Bruce – West Coast Fever
Gretel Bueta – Queensland Firebirds
Verity Charles – West Coast Fever
Sophie Garbin – NSW Swifts
Paige Hadley – NSW Swifts
Kimberley Jenner – Queensland Firebirds
Sarah Klau – NSW Swifts
Cara Koenen – Sunshine Coast Lightning
Kate Moloney – Melbourne Vixens
Amy Parmenter – GIANTS Netball
Jamie-Lee Price – GIANTS Netball
Maddy Proud – NSW Swifts
Maddy Turner – NSW Swifts
Liz Watson – Melbourne Vixens
Jo Weston – Melbourne Vixens
Steph Wood – Sunshine Coast Lightning
Looking at the Development squad and after her first season of Suncorp Super Netball, Hannah Mundy has secured a spot amongst the ranks while fellow youngsters Georgie Horjus and GIANTS shooting sensation Sophie Dwyer have also been named, with Dwyer earning a train-along position for the Diamonds squad camp. In terms of more experienced heads Melbourne Vixens defender Emily Mannix has earned a call-up, as has Alice Teague-Neeld.
Five Queensland Firebirds players were named in the Development squad with Jemma Mi Mi, Tara Hinchliffe – both of whom are injured – Lara Dunkley, Tippah Dwan and Rudi Ellis making the cut after solid seasons. The Thunderbirds are also well represented with Horjus, Matilda Garrett and Maisie Nankivell getting recognition for their seasons. There were a couple of surprise outs with neither Molly Jovic or Tayla Fraser named in the Development squad despite starring throughout the SSN season.
2021/2022 Australian Development squad:
Mahalia Cassidy – Sunshine Coast Lightning
Lara Dunkley – Queensland Firebirds
Tippah Dwan – Queensland Firebirds
Sophie Dwyer – GIANTS Netball
Kate Eddy – Melbourne Vixens
Rudi Ellis – Queensland Firebirds
Matilda Garrett – Adelaide Thunderbirds
Sasha Glasgow – West Coast Fever
Maddie Hay – GIANTS Netball
Tara Hinchliffe – Queensland Firebirds
Georgie Horjus – Adelaide Thunderbirds
Olivia Lewis – West Coast Fever
Emily Mannix – Melbourne Vixens
Matilda McDonnell – GIANTS Netball
Jemma Mi Mi – Queensland Firebirds
Lauren Moore – NSW Swifts
Hannah Mundy – Melbourne Vixens
Maisie Nankivell – Adelaide Thunderbrids
Alice Teague-Neeld – West Coast Fever
Photo credit: Netball Australia