Rotorua's Sam Sinclair has become a permanent fixture in the Silver Ferns squad during the last year and is now set to realise a dream by competing at the Commonwealth Games.

The New Zealand Olympic Committee, in conjunction with Netball New Zealand, has announced the Silver Ferns team to compete at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April and Sinclair has made the cut.

Waikato/Bay of Plenty Magic head coach Margaret Forsyth said she was "very excited" about the inclusion of Sinclair and Magic teammate Kelly Jury in the squad.

"Both have grown so much as international netballers and we know that they will continue to play with great skill, tenacity and pride.

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"Sam's energy and grit in the mid court and Kelly's presence at goalkeeper complement the skills of our national team. We at Magic wish them and the Silver Ferns a successful Commonwealth games campaign," Forsyth said.

The team's immediate focus will be three training camps in the build-up to a series against Jamaica, Malawi and Fiji for the Taini Jamison Trophy in Auckland from March 21-24.



With just three members - Katrina Grant, Maria Folau and Shannon Francois - of the 2014 squad which won silver in Glasgow, Netball New Zealand coach Janine Southby said she wanted to ensure that any changes to this year's squad would give them their strongest combinations of both experience and youth.

She said there were some tough selection decisions that needed to be made after their most recent results, but she and the national selectors were confident in the 12 players selected.

"We are aware of the challenge awaiting us on the Gold Coast which I know will bring out the best of these players," Southby said.

Laura Langman was unavailable for selection due to taking a break away from the sport in 2018.

New Zealand Olympic Committee chief executive Kereyn Smith said she was delighted to welcome the players to the team for Gold Coast 2018.

"Netball is one of the highlights of the Commonwealth Games and we know New Zealanders will be right behind the players named.

"Gold Coast 2018 will feature the world's best netball teams all vying for the gold medal. The competition will be tough but we have no doubts our team will be ready for the challenge," Smith said.

New Zealand have won five Commonwealth Games medals since 1998, including three silvers and two golds. They last won gold in Delhi, India in 2010 after defeating Australia in the final.

The naming takes the total number of athletes selected to the New Zealand Commonwealth Games team to 111.

2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games New Zealand netball squad

Katrina Grant (captain)
Maria Folau (vice-captain)
Kayla Cullen
Ameliaranne Ekenasio
Temalisi Fakahokotau
Shannon Francois
Kelly Jury
Grace Kara
Bailey Mes
Te Paea Selby-Rickit
Michaela Sokolich-Beatson
Samantha Sinclair

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