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Netball - 04. April 2008.

English NSL Interview with Loughborough Lightnings Olivia Murphy

1, This season, Loughborough has been the team to beat – what do you

put your success down to?

We have had the desire and self belief this year and performed when we've needed to under pressure. Also we've learned from our previous campaigns and improved on them

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2 How have you changed your preparations this season compared with

the past two?

Preparations have been pretty similar to previous years, after all we only just missed out by a couple of goals in the first 2 years, but we have been lucky enough to use the wealth of experience that Joan Young and Colette Thomson bring as coaches alongside Rosie Port and that has helped all the girls.

3, What has been your most satisfactory moment in the Superleague

this season?

I'm hoping it will be winning the NSL final......but so far most satisfying has been the way my youngsters have grown in confidence and their performances this year

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4. You’ve taken up a coaching post at Loughborough University this

season – how are you finding juggling coaching with your playing

responsibilities?

It's pretty tough trying to juggle them all especially when it comes to match day when i am trying to perform to my best. Luckily we do have a great coaching team which have helped and supported me. It's also been difficult for me as i have to go from being one of the team to coach.

The girls have been great in trying to respect the difference but it's a real learning experience for me-one which i am enjoying so far.

5. You chose to retire after the Commonwealth Games in 2006, when many

people said you were at the height of your skills. What influenced

your decision? Do you miss playing international netball?

I'm not sure i was at the height of my playing career when i finished, but i knew it was time to retire and haven't missed it since. That's why i know it was the right time.

The main reason for retiring was that after 3 ankle operations it was getting harder and harder to fulfill all my training requirements and play at the level i expect of myself. The team i know is in good hands with Amanda Newton as captain so i could quite happily hand the reins over to her. I have loved my international career and am very honoured to have represented my country on so many occasions-i'd highly recommend it!!!

6. Who are the teams and players you fear most in the Superleague?

I don't really fear anyone in the NSL-every week brings new challenges and new opponents and that's the great thing about the league. I have rivals that i've played against for years, but the beauty of the game is that it's a battle on the court, but you can have a laugh and joke with the same people after the final whistle!!

7, How are you approaching the Superleague final, as a player and as a

squad? Are you confident of victory?

I'm confident of victory-we have nothing to fear in the final. We have been playing well all season and i hope we can take that extra step up this year in the final. We've tried to approach this game as we have all season looking at our possible opponents and their strengths and weaknesses and most importantly concentrating on what we do well. I'm excited about being in the final and look forward to putting out a performance worthy of our season so far.

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