Injured Diamonds captain on track to shine
FROM the outside looking in, Australian captain Caitlin Bassett says the Diamonds are looking good for this year's netball World Cup defence.
But it's from the inside looking out that Bassett wants to be as she works to rehabilitate from a freak accident which left her with a fractured forearm.
Bassett, who missed every game of the recent Quad Series in the UK with the injury, will be in plaster for another three weeks but is confident she will be back fighting fit for the start of Super Netball.
"I can do everything but catch a ball,'' said Bassett, now based in Sydney after signing with the Giants for the 2019 Super netball competition.
"I can do weights, one arm stuff, run, pass, footwork. I just can't catch with two hands.''
Around a month later coach Lisa Alexander will name her team for the World Cup in the UK in July - a side Bassett is tipped to captain once recovered from her injury.
But Bassett says she has gained a new insight into the Diamonds when forced to take a step back due to her arm injury on the recent tour.
"It was a good chance to look in as an outsider, hear what people say about us, their reaction to us," Bassett said.
"For me , what I was really noticed, was really happy to see was the passion, the energy and excitement in the Diamonds."
Bassett is attempting to compete at her third straight World Cup after making her debut in Australia's successful campaign under former coach Norma Plummer in Singapore in 2011.
One of the world's leading shooters, Bassett says she has complete confidence Australia has the talent to defend the World Cup crown they last won in 2015.
The conclusion of this tournament triggered wholesale chances in the Australian team along with mass retirements.
At this stage Bassett and shooting partner Caitlin Thwaites are likely to be the only players left over from the victorious side which won the World Cup in Sydney four years ago.