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Window of opportunity for Tactix midcourter

Window of opportunity for Tactix midcourter

The Good Oil Tactix midcourter Kimiora Poi will head to Australia to play in the remainder of the Suncorp Super Netball season as a replacement player for the Collingwood Magpies.

Poi, who played at centre during the 2019 ANZ Premiership and is already contracted to play in New Zealand for the 2020 season, will join the Magpies for the remainder of the Australian league.

Netball Mainland Chief Executive Brigit Hearn said Poi heads across the Tasman with the backing of both Netball New Zealand and the Mainland franchise in what they see as a developmental opportunity.

She said it was a unique situation in 2019, with the country’s two leagues being contested at different times of the year. The Super Netball competition takes a break at the end of June to accommodate the Netball World Cup in England and resumes again on July 27.

“We don’t believe this will set precedence for our athletes to look to the Australian league,” Hearn said.

“But the way the competitions have lined-up this year opens a unique opportunity for players like Kimiora to continue playing and developing at an elite level.

“We feel this is of benefit for our athletes who have already signed on for next year’s ANZ Premiership to extend their court time this year.”

The Good Oil Tactix coach Marianne Delaney-Hoshek said it was an exciting opportunity for the dynamic midcourter to test herself against the Australian style week-in and out.

“Kimiora is an exceptional athlete who has the speed and skill set to compete with the best,” she said. “She is still very young so this is a chance to carry on her development in a different environment.

“We look forward to seeing the growth she has and what she can add to her game.”

Poi was a member of the New Zealand U21 team which won the Netball World Youth Cup in 2017 and earned her first Test cap for the Silver Ferns against England in January.

The Collingwood Magpies, who are captained by internationals Geva Mentor and Madi Browne, are sitting in fourth spot with two wins. The league’s Finals Series will be played in September.