Hunter Academy of Sport netballers at last year's Academy Games. Image via HAS.

Written by Bianca Smith.

Maitland’s netball stars of the future are set to shine this weekend when they
take on the state’s best as part of the Your Local Club Academy Games Greater
Bank Netball Tournament at Maitland Basketball Stadium on April 13 and 14.

Sponsored by Greater Bank, the two-day tournament will feature close to 300
aspiring netballers aged 14-16 years, representing 11 NSW Regional
Academies, including Greater Bank sponsored Academies Hunter, Central
Coast and Western Region.

The Hunter Academy of Sport will field a strong team this year, which will
include four Maitland players – Lexy Holz, Amity Petersen, Tayla Winter and
Sophie Hickling.

Hunter Academy of Sport CEO, Brett O’Farrell, said “As one of the Academy
Games’ biggest events, the Greater Bank Netball Tournament provides a
wonderful opportunity for budding young players to get a taste of competing at
an elite level.

“The Your Local Club Academy Games is an exciting initiative that enables our
state’s most talented young athletes the chance to come together to not only
compete but to celebrate sport and the skills and commitment involved.”

“The Greater Bank Netball Tournament is one of the most anticipated events of
the Games and plays a key part in the overall talent development of our
netballers. They get the opportunity to showcase their skills as well as learn new
approaches to the game by competing against a broad pool of players.”

The tournament is part of an important pathway for the players to showcase and
test their skills against their peers, with the aim of achieving higher
representative honours. A Merit Team recognising stand out performance will
be selected at the end of the tournament.

Greater Bank’s Community Engagement Manager, Ingrid Kaczor, highlighted
the importance of the netball tournament in promoting young talent and
providing an avenue for players to improve their skills and development.

“As a community bank, our charter is to support the region that supports us. We
have been a proud sponsor of grassroots netball for more than 20 years and are
currently involved with 13 local netball associations across the Hunter region
and beyond,” said Ms Kaczor.

“Earlier this year, we expanded our commitment to supporting regional netball
pathways further by announcing a new three-year partnership with the Hunter,
Central Coast and Western Region Academies of Sport.

“We are thrilled to be working with the Hunter Academy of Sport once again to
roll out the netball tournament and look forward to witnessing the state’s talent
showcase at Maitland Basketball Stadium this weekend.”

More information on the Games can be found at academygames.com.au.