Young netballers headed to NZ

Wednesday August 15, 2018 Written by Published in Netball
Black Pearl national squad members Daimzel Rongokea and Anania Piri will be heading to Auckland next month with three other local players to join the Pacific Nations Netball Academy. 18081409 Black Pearl national squad members Daimzel Rongokea and Anania Piri will be heading to Auckland next month with three other local players to join the Pacific Nations Netball Academy. 18081409

A recently held quiz night has helped raise funds for the next generation of Cook Islands netballers.

The quiz, held on August 7 at the Arorangi club house, was organised to raise funds for the five netballers who are to head to Auckland later this month to join the inaugural Pacific Nations Netball Academy.

More than $5000 was raised to go towards the cost of the players’ return airfares back to the Cook Islands.

Anania Piri, Daimzel Rongokea, Simone Nicholas, Tia Henderson and Marei Nichols were all chosen for the programme, alongside five netballers from Samoa.

Netball Cook Islands vice-president of high performance Andrea Rongokea said the quiz event was a huge success, despite the unfortunate weather on the night.

“Considering the disgusting weather and torrential rain we had, we were very pleased with the turnout of 16 teams and I can confirm that it was certainly nice and dry inside the club house.”

Rongokea said the night was also an opportunity to give out further details regarding the programme to the wider netball community.

“I think that everyone that was there, it was the first time they sort of knew details about the programme, to explain to them what it was about,” said Rongokea.

“We had a slideshow that helped to break down their day-to-day and week-to-week activities.

“Of course, a lot of people were aware they had received the scholarships, but it was great to give them more about specifically what they would be doing. We also had a lot of people saying, ‘Wow it looks amazing – I wish I was 18 again’.”

While the girls are in Auckland for their six-month stay, they will be housed at the home of Highwire Charitable Trust of Auckland (HWCT) CEO David Hopkins.

“David, who generously gave us accommodation for our national team when they travelled to Auckland earlier this year for our World Cup qualifiers, has converted his place so it will be able to house the 10 girls.”

Rongokea said she would like to pass along her thanks to all those who attended.

“Huge thank you to the sponsors who donated prizes for the night and of course everyone who came along and took part. It was great to see once again the support of the local netball community coming out and helping our future netball stars.”

While the girls are in Auckland they will be mentored by Central Pulse defender Sulu Fitzpatrick, who was also announced yesterday as part of the Silver Ferns development squad for 2018.

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