Diamonds are a girl's best friend
THE 82 players who joined in the Laura Geitz Clinic at Bundaberg Netball Association (BNA)'s Daph Geddes Park yesterday received a special bonus.
Australian Diamonds and Queensland Firebirds star and Liz Ellis Diamond winner Geitz was joined by Bundaberg's own Firebirds squad member Ameliarnne Wells to present two two-and-a-half hour sessions on her Central Queensland road trip.
The trip started in Rockhampton last Saturday and has also had stops at Yeppoon, Biloela and Gladstone and will end with a session in Hervey Bay today.
Geitz has had a dream year, including winning the ANZ Championship with the Firebirds undefeated, being part of the world championship-winning team and helping Australia take back the world number one netball ranking.
But she was excited to be able to hit the road, meet fans and put them through their paces.
"Growing up in a regional area, I know how hard it is for young netballers to have access to their favourite players," Geitz said.
"Regional netballers have to work extra hard to fulfil their netball dreams, but it is possible - that is why I decided to visit some of my fans in regional Queensland and help them hone their netball skills, and it has been really good - great."
Geitz is also "definitely looking forward to 2012" and believes the Firebirds can defend their title.
"I am enjoying a bit of a break at the moment but we'll get back into it in the new year," she said.
"With the Firebirds, we have got two good new girls but everyone else is the same and we are looking forward to getting on it and making it back-to-back."
Wells, who made her Firebirds debut this year, is home for the festive season with her family and she said it was "pure coincidence" that she was able to help out with the clinic. But she was very happy to do so and is hoping to get much more court time next season. "It's always good to come home for Christmas and always good to do netball training and help out the girls," Wells said.
"I've been flat chat but not extreme at the moment but it will be when we start again, and my goal is to get more Firebirds' game time next year. But everyone has got to do time on the side-lines and it's up to me to take the opportunity when it comes."
BNA secretary Shelley Naumann was delighted with the success of the day.