The Deadly Choices First Nation Netball squad is gearing up for the Vicki Wilson Shield and Cup teams for 2023, scheduled to take place on Friday, August 4, and Saturday, August 5. This premier netball competition offers a platform for secondary school-aged boys and girls (years 7 - 12) to compete within their respective school sport regions. The aim is to bring together the state's strongest talent, providing them with the opportunity to advance to the finals series and compete for the state championship.
Last year, the Deadly Choices squad made an inspiring debut after securing a wildcard entry, granting them a spot in the competition for the next five years. With excitement building, the team's Coordinator and Assistant Coach, Brendon Cook, is eager to witness their progress this year and identifies key players to watch out for during the upcoming competition.
Among the standout players are Mya Moke, a sharpshooter, and natural athlete, known for her deadly accuracy under the post. Ashley Blackman, another natural athlete and high jump champion, consistently outperforms opponents with her impressive leaping ability. Additionally, Kiesha Muckan, who also plays rugby league for the Sunshine Coast, will be a prominent player in the cup team.
The selection process for the Deadly Choices squad is always challenging due to the abundance of talent in Queensland. Over 70 players participated in the trialing process this year, making the final selection an arduous task for the selectors. As a statewide program, the coaches diligently scout players from various competitions to ensure the best talent is chosen.
Brendon Cook, a volunteer at Netball Queensland and a full-time Deadly Choices Coordinator, emphasizes the significance of government support for the program's expansion. He believes that providing more opportunities for young people to engage in sports can help keep them occupied and away from the streets. Volunteers manage the program, juggling their passion for netball alongside full-time jobs, making additional government support crucial in extending the program to all regions of Queensland.
The Deadly Choices initiative plays a crucial role in keeping vulnerable youth active and engaged in positive activities, aiming to combat the rise in youth crime. While the program's impact is evident, more state government support is essential to maximize its reach and effectiveness in empowering young individuals through sports.
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Photo Courtesy National Indigenous Times
Courtesy National Indigenous Times