A relative late comer to the sport, I first picked up a netball at age 11 when a teacher at my primary school decided I had potential. At 183cm tall (six feet) in grade six, my height was something I was still getting used to. Having never played a team sport before, I instantly fell in love with the game and the social element of it. Being different to everyone else my age was tough and netball was a place I felt I belonged.
My older sister also played netball and we would spend hours in the backyard after school shooting at our home-made netball post. I spent so much time practicing that one day I plucked up the courage to ask for a move to Goal Shooter (after previously being placed in defence to intimidate opposition) and the rest is history!
I made my first state team as a 14-year-old and it was at a Brisbane tournament that I decided I would do anything and everything possible to become a professional netballer.
After years of hard work and playing in underage state teams I was selected for the Perth Orioles during my final year of high school. I debuted as a 16-year-old against Liz Ellis who was the Australian Goal Keeper and Captain at the time. It was not an easy year as I juggled netball, school and travel, however I had a great support network of family, team mates and teachers who helped me survive.
When I was 20 I was invited to join the Australian Diamonds on tour as an injury replacement and subsequently made my national debut in Newcastle becoming Diamond player #150. A lot of hard work lay ahead and I missed out on Diamonds’ selection for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. The following year I fought my way back into the Australian squad for the World Championships in Singapore where I shot the winning goal against New Zealand in extra time to win the gold medal.
The 2014 Commonwealth Games were an important milestone personally having missed the previous games in India. Winning a gold medal capped off the experience perfectly! The following year was one of my most memorable, collecting gold at the World Cup in Sydney and in the process becoming the first shooter to win the Liz Ellis Diamond.
After 12 years playing netball in Western Australia and notching-up more than 100 consecutive games for West Coast Fever, I decided it was time for a change so I departed for foundation Club, Sunshine Coast Lightning. The move turned out to be the best thing for me and not only do I love this special part of Queensland, but Lightning managed to win the Suncorp Super Netball title in its debut season.
Netball has taught me plenty both on and off the court and I have been lucky to have been surrounded by some great leaders. One of the proudest moments in my career was being chosen to lead the Australian Diamonds. To have the respect and trust of my team mates means everything to me.
I am passionate about so many things outside of netball I can barely sit still! I am a self-confessed 'crazy animal lady' and alongside my two rescue kittens, I am the proud owner of a Bernese Mountain Dog, “Chino.” Chino now has a new friend in “Fensa” - an assistant dog from a charity I work with called the Compass Institute. The cheeky Labrador comes absolutely everywhere with me. I also love rabbits and had four mini lop bunnies which I had to leave in Perth when I moved east. Like most athletes, I love coffee and more often than not you will see me with a cup in hand. I make it my mission where ever I am travelling to find the best spot in town.
In preparation for life after netball I am studying a Communications degree majoring in Broadcast and Journalism. Once university is completed and my netball career wraps up, I hope to get a job in the media and cover not only sport but the environment and news and current affairs. In preparation for that day I write a regular column for the Sunshine Coast Daily as well as hosting a breakfast radio show on HOT 91.1.