THE ANZ Premiership signing period has come to an end with all six teams finalised and a number of huge names changing clubs. A couple of players have crossed the Tasman to join the ANZ Premiership from the Suncorp Super Netball while a couple of club heroes are set to join forces with arch rivals. With that in mind we cast an eye over each team list heading into the 2022 season.
The Pulse have a very different looking squad heading into the upcoming season with a plethora of familiar faces missing including this year’s captain in Claire Kersten. However, they will welcome back a couple of exciting prospect with Yvette McCausland-Durie returning as head coach and Tiana Metuarau returning to her roots. They have also poached a couple of SSN players with inaugural GIANTS defender Kristiana Manu’a joining the fray alongside Sunshine Coast Lightning youngster Binninan Hunt. Goal keeper Temalisi Fakahokotau has found herself at her third club in three years and will be a welcomed addition to the side as they look to climb up the ladder after a less than desirable season.
It is no surprise that the Tactix have remained relatively unchanged minus one or two alterations to the squad with Erikana Pedersen no longer with the team. Kelera Nawai-Caucau has joined forces with the side after crossing from the Pulse further bolstering the Tactix’s defensive stocks. The key pillars have stuck around with Jane Watson and Karin Burger building a dominant force down back while the combination up forward between Ellie Bird and Te Paea Selby-Rickit is developing at a rate of knots.
Te Paea Selby-Rickit
The premiership-winning side have welcomed back a couple of big names with both Phoenix Karaka and Michaela Sokolich-Beatson set to pull on the dress next season. Karaka made a couple of cameo appearances towards the back-end of the season while Sokolich-Beatson will be chomping at the bit after being sidelined with injury this yeear. Australian Claire O’Brien has been awarded with a full time contract with the midcourter proving she is more than capable of standing up under the pressure for the Mystics. One of the biggest signings though was the acquisition of Monica Falkner with the former Northern Stars goal attack switching things up and looking to have an impact with the Mystics next season alongside powerhouse Grace Nweke.
The Stars have gone back to their roots with Kayla Johnson (Nee Cullen) and Holly Fowler signing on for the 2022 season. It has been a while between drinks for Johnson with the defender last playing with the NSW Swifts before sitting out with pregnancy while Fowler has made the switch from the Magic to the Stars. Everything else remains the same for the stars with the midcourt unchanged and the shooting circle seeing Amorangi Malesala, Jamie Hume and Maia Wilson all retain their spots.
After enjoying a rapid rise up the ladder the Steel have added further defensive depth to their squad and a couple more options under the post. Georgia Heffernan is set to return after rupturing her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in 2020 and will join George Fisher in the circle while Saviour Tui has made the switch from the Mystics to Steel in hope of achieving more court time. Defensively, the Steel have picked up premiership winning defender Kate Burley who is also heading to her third club in three years.
Te Huinga Selby-RIckit
Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic:
There has been no shortage of changes in the Magic side with a couple of big names farewelled as Caitlin Bassett returns to Australia and Grace Kara not returning. But those changes paved the way for some very exciting gets with Ameliaranne Ekenasio set to pull on the Magic dress alongside a couple of her former Pulse teammates in Katrina Rore and Kersten. Both Rore and Ekenasio will be coming in off the back of pregnancy but that will not stop them from dominating out on court. The names do not stop there with Bailey Mes also joining the club from the Mystics making for an exceptionally well-rounded and dynamic squad. Oceane Maihi rounds out the alterations with the defender swapping from the Stars.