It will be the bright lights for the Phillips Electrical WHS A1 Netball team in Nelson this week at their first New Zealand Secondary School championships.

The Lisa Murphy-coached side qualified for the nationals after coming third at the Lower North Island Winter Tournament in Wellington last month, their best ever performance after coming into the tournament with a ranking of ninth.

This followed on from winning the Manawatu Secondary School A Grade title, which was played on Saturday's, and coming runnerup in the Netball Whanganui Premier Championship, played on Monday nights, where they were undefeated until being upset in the final by Kaierau A1.

But it will be a whole new level to be facing the other top 15 school teams from around the country.


WHS is drawn in a pool with Auckland's St Kentigern College (Upper North Island winners), Epsom Girls' Grammar (fifth in Upper North Island) and Canterbury's Ashburton College (fourth in South Island).

"This week is definitely a step up for my girls, but if we stick to our game plan and play disciplined netball which we did at LNISS it will help," said Murphy.

"We are excited for the week ahead and to play against the best in New Zealand."

The games start at Saxton Stadium on Tuesday, with WHS facing Ashbuton at 11.50am.

With their season going longer than any time previously and requiring the long trip to Nelson, the team has been fundraising for the past four weeks since the LNISS tournament.

"We would like to thank our community for their generosity and absolutely fantastic support they have given the team. We are truly thankful to you all," said Murphy.

With the support from these wonderful places, it has helped take the pressure off our team's families in enabling us to go and compete not only for WHS but Whanganui as well.

As well as business sponsors, the public has contributed through donations and purchasing raffle tickets.


Major sponsors are Hire It Wanganui, Phillips Electrical, Whanganui High School, St Johns Club, The Barracks Sports Bar, Fordell Dairy Ltd, Brenda Hyland, Bartley Group Holdings, WW Construction, Mitre 10 Mega, Netball Whanganui, Viking Lodge Motel (Dannevirke), Pak 'N Save Whanganui, Laugensen's Veges (donated veges for raffle).