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Netball - 15. September 2011.

Alexander names Diamonds teams for Holden Netball Test Series



Australian Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander has only made one change to the
team that won the 2011 World Netball Championship in Singapore for
October's Holden Netball Test Series.

Queensland Firebirds premiership player Amy Steel was the only new
inclusion for next month's international Test series, named for the
three Tests against England, replacing defender Susan Fuhrmann in the
Diamonds 12-player team as selection camp concluded at the Australian
Institute of Sport on Friday.

"We're thrilled for Amy, it's a breakthrough for her," Alexander said.

"She started off a little bit slowly this week at camp but she certainly
came through very strongly in the end the way that she came into camp,
she was very prepared and her fitness results here excellent; we're
thrilled with her attitude and willingness to push herself to that next
level."

"Amy brings strength in terms of her height, reach, agility, her ability
to compete in both goal defence and goal keeper so she brings a real
sense of flexibility to our side and I'm thrilled that she can perform
on a consistent basis."

The original team of 12 that won July's World Championship will take on
the New Zealand Silver Ferns with Fuhrmann returning to the Diamonds
team, subject to fitness test, in place of Steel for the remaining three
Tests in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne.

"She's got an injury and will need to be managed carefully and Amy Steel
will come into her position for the England series," Alexander said.

"Susan hurt her ankle on the first day of camp during fitness testing
but we've followed our medical advice which was to keep her off that
ankle so that she would be ready train at the team camp in a couple of
weeks."

Alexander expressed her delight in the quality of 22 players at
selection camp but found it difficult to look past the team that claimed
Australia's 10th World Championship title in July.

"What was really pleasing was the fresh approach the players brought
into camp, their enthusiasm and positive energy and willingness to give
off themselves was completely humbling," Alexander said.

"It's so difficult to express how close some players are to selection
when they miss out."

"I said to the players at the start of the week that it's important that
we maintain a High Performance approach that we want to keep on
improving and it's not good enough to rest of your laurels but certainly
the upmost in our minds of selectors was that the World Championship
team was sensational on all accounts."

"At the end of the day international performances are very important and
the potential for improvement."

"The legacy and team that was put together for World Championships, in
my opinion, was an excellent group of people and it's not just about
netballers, it's about the high performance athletes that have those
special qualities."

"The team deserves its position: their performances speak for themselves
and did so this week."

The Australian Diamonds team to contest the 2011 Holden Netball Test
Series will be back at the AIS for another four-day camp starting on
Thursday 22 September ahead of the first Test against England on October
9 in Newcastle.


Diamonds team for England Series

Natalie von Bertouch (C), Catherine Cox (VC), Caitlin Bassett, Erin
Bell, Julie Corletto, Laura Geitz, Mo'onia Gerrard, Kimberlee Green,
Sharni Layton, Natalie Medhurst, Chelsea Pitman, Amy Steel

Diamonds team for New Zealand series

Natalie von Bertouch (C), Catherine Cox (VC), Caitlin Bassett, Erin
Bell, Julie Corletto, Susan Fuhrmann (subject to fitness test), Laura
Geitz, Mo'onia Gerrard, Kimberlee Green, Sharni Layton, Natalie
Medhurst, Chelsea Pitman

Diamonds Support Staff:

Coach: Lisa Alexander
Assistant Coach: Julie Fitzgerald
Team Manager: Janet Bothwell
Physiotherapist: Steve Hawkins, Alanna Antcliff
Doctor: Tom Hilton
Performance Analyst: Tara Handke

2011 Holden Netball Test Series Dates:

9 Oct – Australian Diamonds v England, Newcastle Entertainment Centre, Newcastle
12 Oct – Australian Diamonds v England, AIS Arena, Canberra
16 Oct – Australian Diamonds v England, Acer Arena, Sydney
23 Oct – Australian Diamonds v New Zealand Silver Ferns, Burswood Dome, Perth
26 Oct – Australian Diamonds v New Zealand Silver Ferns, Adelaide Entertainment Centre, Adelaide
30 Oct – Australian Diamonds v New Zealand Silver Ferns, Hisense Arena, Melbourne.
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