• Super 8 netball coaches should start bribing Hawke's Bay Netball operations manager Tina Arlidge after Silver Ferns great Irene van Dyk has indicated she doesn't mind playing the odd lower grade matches on Saturdays.
• However, Van Dyk says coaching is more likely to be kinder to her 47-year-old body these days.
That trademark Irene van Dyk conviviality is still there as she throws her head back in laughter when asked if she'll play netball in Hawke's Bay.
"I like that article that came out to say I'm turning 47 so people should take note of that age bracket," says Van Dyk after the Facebook site of Hawke's Bay Today went viral from the Bay netball faithful last week when they discovered she and husband Christie had settled at Poraiti, from Wellington, on the Queen's Birthday weekend a fortnight ago.
The former Silver Ferns great says sticking to her fitness regime is imperative but she hasn't played official netball for the past three years.
"If they want someone who goes everywhere and creates a havoc then, sure, I'm your lady but no, no I haven't played official netball although I've played the odd game here and there purely just to follow things and those kinds of stuff."
A grinning Van Dyk, who is a specialist coach with the ANZ Premiership-winning Central Pulse team, says she's definitely not Karamau Holden Super 8 Bay premiership club fit on Friday nights.
A rash of Super 8 coaches, albeit jovially, are keen to have Van Dyk as a club member because of her ability to coach or simply be a walking billboard to promote anything netball.
"If I do decide to play next year it'll literally be rock up, play on a Saturday and go home," says the former goal shoot who has a record 145 caps for New Zealand after representing and captaining her country of birth, South Africa, 72 times.
Training is not part of the portfolio of the lanky retired international who, after a stellar stint with the Bay of Plenty/Waikato Magic, represented the Central Pulse from 2014-16 before working as junior development officer (5 to 13 years) for the Netball Central Zone, which was established in 2012 to oversee the promotion, development and growth of the amateur code in the Wellington, Hawke's Bay, Manawatu, Whanganui and Taranaki regions.
"I've trained for 20 years of my life so come on, I just want to rock up, play a little and just say, 'See you later'."
Social, she emphasises, is the buzz word where "more experienced ladies are playing, will be my cup of tea".
Van Dyk says mentoring will be her forte now because her "playing ship had sailed well and truly" although she did play the odd elite club game for St Mary's Old Girls (SMOG) club in Wellington when not coaching youngsters there.
She is ruling out doing much in any capacity because an army of dedicated and loyal volunteers are already performing admirably so she has no intentions of unsettling that.
"So I don't want to cut anyone's cake but next year I'll put my hand up and, hopefully, try to start to get some rep coaching done as well."
Getting her claws back into the stellar job Hawke's Bay Netball operations manager Tina Arlidge and her staff are doing appeals to Van Dyk.
No doubt, picking a club to engage with will be tricky for her but she intends to leave that side of things in the hands of Arlidge and her stable.
Having made numerous trips to the Bay in her job over the years, the bewitching climes have already struck a chord with her and Christie.
"Purely because of the people and my husband and I have always loved Hawke's Bay and the weather," she says. "We had torrential downpours in Wellington on Friday but arriving in Hawke's Bay that afternoon was just beautiful and gorgeous."
What caught them by surprise is how "super laid back" people here are as the couple walked their beagle, Hunter, who doesn't live up to its name because it's "the slowest dog in New Zealand".
"I'm in a lucky position where my job takes me all through the lower North Island so regardless of where I live I can do my job," she says.
She was team manager of the Wellington Blaze women's domestic cricketers who Christie coached to a T20 crown last summer before he resigned in February. So does he harbour desires to mentor in a similar capacity here?
"Yes, he'd love to continue but I don't where he'd be going, to be honest, but I'm sure he'd want to because cricket is in his blood."
Van Dyk says they haven't had a chance to talk about his plans because they were caught up in moving into their new home.
Their daughter, Bianca, who has just turned 21, is living on the Gold Coast, Australia, after graduating from an American university where she was on a rowing scholarship.
"She's playing netball there for Sheryl George-Burns, who played netball the same time as Waimarama Taumaunu," she says of Bianca who plays for a Bond University Bull Sharks outfit under the former Silver Fern.
Following in her mother footsteps as a goal shoot, Bianca, Van Dyk was hoping, would have returned home to play under her tutelage in a SMOG team but that didn't transpire.
"No, she's decided that she's chasing the sun so she's definitely a sun bunny like I am."
And, no, she suspects Bianca "definitely" won't be wearing the Green and Gold of Netball Australia.
A "young baby", Van Dyk isn't sure what Bianca's sporting ambitions are in netball or rowing.