Netball Samoa gear up for big 2019 with Wellington training camp

Samoa’s national netball team completed a training camp in Wellington, New Zealand last week, in preparation for the Pacific Games and World Cup next year.

The wider training squad of 18 players competed in three games over the four day camp, as well as multiple trainings every day.

Coach Frances Solia said it was a good hard camp.

“We need to be able to perform with fatigue.

“We’ll be playing every day at the World Cup so that’s what we’re preparing for.”

Solia said she is looking for consistent performances from the players under challenging conditions.

Samoa had games against Netball Central teams as well as an 87-35 loss to ANZ Premiership team Central Pulse.

Solia said games against tough opposition are the best thing for her team’s development.

“We need to know we can still execute game plans against those top-quality players.”

The team started their build-up towards the Pacific Games and World Cup last August.

Solia said there has been a real shift in work ethic and mindset since then.

“Those that have survived the cuts to the squad would be proud to be still standing.

“Now we are at a point we are everyone is working overtime to make the final 12.

“I’m really happy with where we’re at.”

The squad for July will be selected after a final trial in March.

Three locally based Samoans remain in the squad of 18, but because of other commitments only Tovale Solinuu made it to the Wellington camp.

“She I was most proud of,” Solia said.

“All the others here are masagi to each other and she came by herself.

“I just threw her into the Pulse game, up against (former Silver Fern captain) Katrina Rore and she really held her own.”

Solia said that’s a testament to the work being done in Samoa.

“One of the challenging things is people being apart, with a lot of the team in Auckland or Australia.

“We are amateur, so we can’t have centralised training.

“We need key people to connect with so they can keep an eye on the players overseas.”

Solia said without the backing of Netball Samoa CEO Rosemarie Esera and the board, the team wouldn’t be in the position it is today.

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