Wairarapa girl in Pulse's plans for glory

By Gary Caffell

There will be a Wairarapa connection in the Haier Pulse team when they contest the 2013 ANZ netball championship.

Midcourt player Claire Kersten is a daughter of Rathkeale College principal Willy Kersten and his wife Ali, who is on the staff at Hadlow School.

Claire Kersten, 23, a science teacher at Newlands College in Wellington, has already made her mark on the provincial netball scene, having played for Manawatu, Otago, Canterbury and Wellington and she was a member of the New Zealand under-21 side which finished runner-up at the world youth championships in Rarotonga in 2009, her second successive year with that side.

Comfortable at wing defence or centre, Kersten will join some of the more experienced members of the Pulse squad in an invitational team which will travel to Scotland for the World Premier Club Challenge at the end of this month, after which they will start their ANZ championship build-up under the watchful eye of coach Robyn Broughton.

Everything points to the Pulse being a top four contender next year.

They now boast a powerful line-up which includes former Silver Ferns Donna Wilkins and Liana Leota, current internationals Millie Lees and inspirational captain Katrina Grant and one of the newcomers to the Australian Diamonds side in ace shooter Caitlin Thwaites.

Last year's home games for the Pulse were sold out and the same is expected for 2013 when they will be playing three games at Wellington's TSB Arena (3800 capacity) and three games at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua (2000 capacity).

Haier Pulse general manager Kyla Lange stresses the importance of looking after the team's supporters, saying the big change for next season will be the introduction of allocated seating at both of the home venues, which means every ticket holder will know exactly where they will be sitting.

Season memberships are now on sale at $150 adult, $60 for a child 15 years and under and $200 for one adult and one child.

- Wairarapa Times-Age

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