The Robinhood Northern Stars are excited to announce their full roster for the 2021 ANZ Premiership, brimming with experience and a number of new faces.
Foundation member and Silver Fern Maia Wilson returns for her fifth year in the purple strip and will be joined by fellow Fern and new recruit Gina Crampton who makes her first move north having spent her ANZ Premiership career with the Southern Steel.
Bringing experience to a new-look defensive end will be former Silver Fern Anna Harrison who is returning to New Zealand’s elite league after a two-year absence.
The core of this year’s team returns including Silver Ferns Development Squad member Jamie Hume along with Mila Reuelu-Buchanan, Lisa Mather and Oceane Maihi.
New to next year’s squad are Elle Temu, who makes the move to Auckland after her Premiership-winning season with the Central Pulse, Monica Falkner, who returns from injury and is part of the Silver Ferns development squad, and Amorangi Malesala who has been playing netball in Australia.
Stars General Manager, Dianne Lasenby, said they were pleased to have confirmed their playing roster for next season.
“It’s great to be in a position to name our full team and we’re looking forward to building towards the 2021 ANZ Premiership,” she said.
Stars head coach, Kiri Wills, said she was excited with the mix of core players from this season and the new faces who would bring many different strengths to the side.
“I feel like there is a real Stars spine that we are developing, from Maia Wilson, who has been with us right from the start through to the blend of experience we have across the court,” she said.
Wills was looking forward to working with Harrison who would follow in the footsteps of former Ferns Leana de Bruin and Temepara Bailey, acting as mentors while providing that experience and competitive edge on court.
“Anna will mentor and lead our young talented defenders and those we take on as training partners,” Wills said. “She is highly conscious of the player pathway and wants to contribute in a way that helps to grow these athletes.”
“We have seen the value of having experienced defenders like Leana de Bruin and Storm Purvis on the development of Kate Burley and Oceane Maihi in recent years, so we know this works.”
Harrison said “I’m really looking forward to this, unexpected, but an exciting challenge! Particularly the personal growth that playing in a new team and environment will provide me and as an even older athlete from when I left! The opportunity to work with up and coming players is especially appealing. I love the environment of competitive netball and being on court is a perspective like no other in which I hope to help the players around me be the best they can be.
Wills mentioned, the inclusion of Crampton, who was moving north would add a new dynamic to their attacking line.
“Gina has a wealth of experience and has already worked alongside Maia at international level and I’m really looking forward to seeing how that connection grows,” she said.
2021 Robinhood Stars