Netball: Wider Silver Ferns squad join defence of Fastnet title

By Dana Johannsen

Maree Bowden. Photo / Supplied
Maree Bowden. Photo / Supplied

Canterbury Tactix midcourter Maree Bowden will captain the New Zealand netball team to defend their world Fastnet title in England next month.

Bowden heads a team largely devoid of Silver Ferns, who returned from the Commonwealth Games last weekend.

Rookie shooter Grace Rasmussen is the only player from that gold-medal winning side to be making the trip to the UK, with the remainder of the team to be rested before what promises to be a busy 2011 season.

Rasmussen is joined by members of the wider Silver Ferns squad - Canterbury's Charlotte Kight and Anna Thompson and the Central Pulse's Camilla Lees, who all missed selection for the Commonwealth Games.

Netball New Zealand high-performance director Tracey Fear said the Fastnet tournament in Liverpool on November 19-21 was an opportunity for the players to step up to the international level under the guidance of Southern Steel coach and national selector Robyn Broughton.

New Zealand have taken the same approach as the Australians, who have also named a second-string side for the tournament.

Fastnet is a shortened version of the game which includes rolling substitutions, six-minute quarters and two-point goals. New Zealand won the inaugural tournament in Manchester last year.

New Zealand team: Maree Bowden (captain, Canterbury Tactix), Ellen Halpenny (Tactix), Kayla Cullen (Northern Mystics), Charlotte Kight (Tactix), Camilla Lees (Central Pulse), Jess Moulds (Mystics), Grace Rasmussen (Mystics), Rachel Rasmussen (Mystics), Hayley Saunders (Southern Steel), Te Huinga Reo Selby Rickit (Steel), Anna Thompson (Tactix).

- NZ Herald

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