Magpies lock in new coach

Camperdown has appointed Brooke Richardson as its new open netball coach for the 2019 Hampden league season.

CAMPERDOWN has named Brooke Richardson as its new open netball coach for season 2019.

The defender, who joined the club in 2015 but missed the 2016 season after giving birth to daughter Willow, takes on the role from outgoing mentor Sharon Kenna, who has stood down after a year at the helm.

Richardson said she was feeling a mixture of excitement and nerves after she decided to accept the role.

“I’m very excited,” she said.

“It was just an opportunity that I couldn’t not take.

“It’s such a great group of girls and a lovely club.

“I’m nervous at the same time, but hopefully I can do well and bring something (different) to the club.”

Richardson has previous coaching experience, having taken control of a senior side at Wickliffe-Lake Bolac for one season.

She said that year was “difficult” because she was coaching her family and friends but added it was a “really good learning curve” for her coaching experience.

Her recent captaincy role at the club over the past two seasons has also helped her development and now she feels ready to take on the top job once again.

Richardson said as a coach she would be doing her best to help each one of her players develop their netball in a bid to reach their potential.

She said she wanted girls within her side that would play their role for the team and will give their best effort week in, week out.

“I hope to push everyone to the next level,” Richardson said.

“The expectations will be high and I’m looking for the girls that will give 100 per cent for 15 minutes each quarter.”

Richardson has already got to work since accepting the job, making an effort to retain the current list, while also trying to attract new players.

While areas have been identified for strengthening, she was wary she did not want to reduce opportunities for those currently at Camperdown.

“It will be nice to build on what we have, but I’m mindful of not pushing girls away (that are already at the club),” she said.

“It’s about finding that balance.”

While pre-season training is still to be confirmed, Richardson said she planned to get everyone together towards the end of November and the start of December.

While she said it would not be anything formal, she added it was going to be a good chance for the group to get together to commence preparations for the new season.

Netball co-ordinator Donna Conheady said when the club became aware of Kenna’s decision to finish up, they sought her opinion on potential coaches for next season.

Both parties agreed Richardson was the ideal candidate and knowing she already held a leadership position within the senior group and had the respect of her peers, they approached her to gauge her interest.

Coincidentally on the same day they approached her at Portland in round 16, Richardson had been in discussion with friends on the car trip across about the possibility of taking on the role.

After the initial discussion, further meetings were held and after time to consider the opportunity, she accepted the job.

Conheady was thrilled with the decision and said the Magpies were excited about Richardson becoming coach of the club.

“We just thought she is right there and it’s a good time for her and us as a club (to appoint her as coach),” she said.

“We were really impressed with her leadership this year; she did really well with the captaincy.

“We think she has a lot to offer the club and she has fresh ideas and a lot of enthusiasm which will be good.”

Conheady also thanked Kenna for her input in identifying their new leader, but also for her efforts as coach.

“She’s been wonderful,” she said.

“We are extremely grateful for what she has given to the club in the two years she has been here.

“Her experience and knowledge of the game is second to none and she’s lovely to be around but obviously we’re sad she couldn’t continue.”

Camperdown will celebrate its best and fairests and high achievers in both football and netball during season 2018 at the club’s presentation night tonight.

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