Netball trials ‘not for the fainthearted’

Friday 17 January 2020 | Written by Rashneel Kumar | Published in Netball


Only those players who are up for a ‘real challenge’ are invited to attend the three day netball trials.

Netball Cook Islands is requesting players who are “not ready” to not attend the three-day under-21 trials and training programme this week.

The trials aimed at selecting the Cook Islands squad for the World Youth Championship qualifiers will start this morning at the National Stadium.

It will be conducted by the newly-appointed national U21 coach Joy Bates.

Netball Cook Islands vice-president high performance Andrea Rongokea reiterated that these sessions were primarily for those who will be competing in the upcoming February trials.

“It is going to be an intensive programme, so we don’t want to put off those girls that aren’t quite ready,” Rongokea said.

She said the programme was a first of its kind to be held in Rarotonga and would help expose local players to a high level training environment.

“Netball Cook Islands is excited to have coach Joy on the island to start her programme with the local players, and I know the girls themselves are very excited to get started,” Rongokea said.

“There is some nervous anticipation from our younger players as they haven’t been a part of such a programme before, but with our more senior and experienced players to guide and mentor them, we know they will all take on board everything Joy has to offer. The result will be a strong local contingent come trials in February.”

A number of local players have already begun training early in the New Year in preparation for this trials and programme, Rongokea said.

“You will no doubt see them pounding the ‘pavements’ around the island, building up their fitness and strength ahead of what is to come.”

All sessions will be held at Arorangi courts, except the first session that will be at the National Stadium.

The participants are required to arrive 15 minutes before the start times of each session, dressed appropriately for training, strapped (if required) and ready to go.

Athletes must bring a large drink bottle, a pen, a towel, a snack to eat and a change of top/clothes for after training.

There are two compulsory sessions each day and one optional specialist session. dependant on playing position.

All participants are expected to attend the six compulsory sessions. There will be a debrief of three-day sessions as a group and the coaches will meet with each player to set individual development plans.

“We will also go over the selection criteria and explain the trial and selection process, talk about mental preparation, overall well-being and how to stay in touch,” Rongokea said.

The February trials which will be held from 6 to 8 will help the management make the final decision on the team playing in the World Youth Cup qualifying tournament in June this year.


Today: 9am-11am Session One – Getting fit, jumping and landing - Warm up, Cardio session, Jumping and landing (body mechanics). Homework: Hydration; 12pm-1pm Shooting Session – Shooting technique, drills progressing to game situation. Shooting cards; 3pm-5pm Session Two –Passing, catching and strength - Warm Up, Cardio Session, Strength, Passing and catching. Homework: Goal Setting.

Tomorrow: 8am-10am Session Three – Attacking Fundamentals - Warm Up, Jumping and Landing (revision), Cardio Session, Passing, Getting free. Homework: Nutrition; 11am - 12pm Attacking Session – Centre pass attack, circle placement; 2pm-4pm Session Four – Defensive - Warm Up, Cardio Session, Open and Close marking, Phases of defence, Homework: Plan your week; 5pm – 6pm Defensive Session – Centre pass defence and circle defence session.

Saturday: 8am-10am Session Five – Attacking Extension - Warm Up, Jumping and Landing (revision), Passing, Cardio Session, Attacking revision (TGFU). Homework: Recovery; 10am-2pm Q&A and IPPs – Q&A session from 10-10.30am then open free time for players to meet 1:1 with coaches and go over Individual Performance Plans.; 2pm-4pm Session Six – Defensive Extension - Warm Up, Cardio Session, Passing, Intercepting, Defensive revision (TGFU). Homework: Stretching and flexibility