Leading qualities bolster Jets in exciting competition
NETBALL: Having two accomplished captains leading the way gives the Jets every chance of completing a successful debut season in Netball Queensland's Sapphire series.
After a first-up 65-51 win over the Tigers, the signs are positive.
Preparing for tonight's second round game against the reputable Cougars, Jets coach Tracey Jeanes-Fraser offered some valuable insights into why co-captains Stephanie O'Brien and Siobhan Shirlaw are so important to the newly-formed team.
"Stephanie and Siobhan provide tremendous leadership and mentoring across the court,'' Jeanes-Fraser said.
"Both are amazing advocates of the game and have the respect of the Jets athlete and staff cohort.
"Both lead by example on the court, with a high commitment to quality, a willingness to learn and a dogged attitude to leave no rock unturned.
"Off the court they are approachable, demonstrate through actions what is expected by our Jets standards and place the Jets environment and the wider community as key to our success.''
Jeanes-Fraser expected to field the same Jets Sapphires side from last week's opening round victory, with the inclusion of Firebirds defender Laura Clemesha.
"With the Suncorp Super Netball League in a break due to the World Cup, all SSL players come back to their home side,'' Jeanes-Fraser said.
"Laura is a Toowoomba girl who has established herself as a tenacious defender and we are extremely fortunate and excited to have her on board with Jets.''
As for tonight's opponents, Jeanes-Fraser was keen to build on last week's effort.
"The Cougars team are a well drilled, experienced and highly skilled team that we very much respect and acknowledge for what they bring to the court,'' she said.
"We have prepared well this week with great intensity and quality with focus areas on maintaining and treasuring the possession we have and also defensively working on turning ball and capitalising on any of their errors.''
Among the players Jeanes-Fraser is bringing on his season is 18-year-old Charlie Bell, who stands at a mighty 197cm tall.
"Charlie is a local girl from the Western Suburbs who have been under my tutelage through both school environment of St Aidans and in the State League over the past three years,'' the Jets coach said.
"I'm really enjoying the Jets environment.
"We have a very strong connection across both the Sapphires and Ruby's teams with athletes and staff being as one.
"As a collective we are extremely committed to being out in the community and assisting our grassroots players and coaches to build their skills and confidence to be the best versions of themselves both on and off the court.''
Sapphire series Rd 2: Tonight (7.40pm) - Jets v Cougars.
Ruby series Rd 2: Tonight (6pm) - Jets v Cougars.
Both matches at Queensland State Netball Centre, Mt Gravatt.