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2024 Preview: Tactix looking to add polish in 2024

2024 Preview: Tactix looking to add polish in 2024

With the luxury of retaining eight players from last year, building on their depth has been a key focus for the Trident Homes Tactix heading into the 2024 season.

Familiar faces in shooter Jess Allan and midcourter Erikana Pedersen are the new additions to the team for the upcoming campaign but both have plenty of first-hand knowledge of the Tactix environment.

After having massive change the year before (2022), it was critical for us to have a year to build on what we started last year,” Tacitx coach Marianne Delaney-Hoshek said.

We built some good links last year and played some good netball at different times, so we really wanted to just build on what we’d already done.”

Christchurch product Allan has been through the Mainland development programmes, is a previous training partner and has had plenty of experience in the red-and-blacks environment.

From when she first started with us, Jess has made heaps of gains in her court play, is shooting really well and is quite different to our other shooters (Aliyah Dunn and Te Paea Selby-Rickit), so that’s been a pretty easy fit,” Delaney-Hoshek said.

Pedersen, who is coming out of retirement for the second time, hasn’t played at the elite level since 2022 when she spent a season as an injury replacement with Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse but previous to that had been a key cog for the Tactix for seven years (2015 – 2021).

“It’s like she never left. What she adds is just that maturity and she’s probably got the best feed into the circle that’s going around, and her leadership, in general, is really critical for the team. So, it was great that she wanted to come back.

“I think having a year away has really refreshed her and she is just loving being back.”

On paper, the Tactix have an accomplished line-up that oozes experience which Delaney-Hoshek is hopeful will reap the on-court rewards while building on their depth and diversity.

“One thing I’ve learnt is that you can have a good line-up but also if you have a lot of injuries, you’re in trouble and that is essentially what happened to us last year,” she said.

“So, a real focus for us, has been building depth in other ways if those sorts of things happen again. I think it also took a little while last year to get that combination going with Aliyah and Te Paea, and just how they were going to play together.

“That really built last year, so that will be good to have that start off with them having had a season under their belt.

“We had quite a lot of change last year but that has put us in a better position for this year.”

Delaney-Hoshek believes the one game a week format for this season will allow more time for teaching, learning and completing the full processes before and after games, and as a consequence, deliver a better product.

The Tactix have retained their leadership duo of captain Kimiora Poi and vice-captain Karin Burger.