Glen give title their best shot

ON THE BALL: Eliza Perkins will join the division one team to take on the region's best netball sides including powerhouses Tamworth and Quirindi. Photo: Josh Brightman.
ON THE BALL: Eliza Perkins will join the division one team to take on the region's best netball sides including powerhouses Tamworth and Quirindi. Photo: Josh Brightman.

An impressive appearance at the NSW state netball championships last month put Glen Innes teams in good stead for when they take on Northern Inland’s strongest sides in the prestigious Regional League competition. 

Players from the trophy-winning under 17s and the fourth-placed opens team will make up sides in division one and two for the Regional League while younger under 14s players are set to line up in division three. 

The competition commences in Inverell this Sunday and division one co-coach Julie Fuller said it is the first time in “a couple of years” Glen Innes has entered a side but they are set to return and make a massive impact. 

“My expectations are that Quirindi and Glen Innes in division one are the strong ones,” she said. 

“Tamworth 17s are very strong, I didn't put my 17s side [from state] in, they're playing opens. 

“I put them up so they actually get stronger competition.” 

Teams from Inverell, Armidale, Moree and Narrabri will also line up in the competition. 

Glen Innes division one will take on Tamworth in their first game on Sunday.

Division two start their campaign against Moree while the under 17s play Armidale first up. 

After the Inverell round, the tournament heads to Tamworth the following week before round three commences in Gunnedah on August 13. 

The finals will be back in Tamworth on August 20 with the winners of division one progressing on to take on other regional winners from around the state. 

Northern Inland is the final region from the state to conduct the Regional League and Fuller believes this could play to their advantage in the next level. 

“We lead on to this for the girls to go to state trials for the big state teams,” she said. 

“This is our carnival so we can get better preparation so we can go on further. 

“We are probably more prepared for our girls to go on to state because there's not much left, only a few carnivals and your local stuff.” 

A host of Glen Innes players also go into the Northern Inland tournament with recent high-level experience under their belts. 

Members of the Northern Inland Academy of Sport squad took on other young stars in the recent Academy Games and Australian Youth Invitational Games.

The NIAS teams faced opponents from bigger areas but more than held their own. 

“They only went down in a couple of games by three and four but the div one team beat Illawarra, which is a huge claim to fame for us, and they improved the whole time,” Fuller said. 

“The girls really stepped up. We were very competitive this year, no one took us lightly.”

Glen Innes’ Eliza Perkins was named division one’s most valuable player.