The first Australian men’s netball team to tour under the new national team identity the Kelpies has been named by Head Coach Nerida Stewart.
Stewart has named 2 uncapped and 10 capped players in an experienced list who were “pushed to their limits and rose to the top” in a selection camp and process where 30 athletes were screened.
2022 captain and Chris Carroll Medallist (as international player of the year) Dylan Nexhip will headline the team into their upcoming campaign. The defensive tagger will be joined by aerial Victorian defender Alastair Punshon, while the defensive stocks have been bolstered by Josh Byron who returns to the sport after a stint in the AFL pathway. The bolter of the defensive list is Victor Nikolic, who on Opens debut at the Easter championships amassed over 70 intercepts to lead the gains stat for the competition and announce himself onto the elite domestic stage.
A speedy mid court will be headlined by the return of Riley Richardson, Liam Forcadilla and Dylan McPherson who all had stand-out 2022 campaigns and have dominated the international mid court for several years. Injected into this experienced line up after graduating from 23&U national duties is Jack Vandervelde, a deft-handed leftie who will chase his first cap.
The shooting end has all four positions filled by returning athletes. Jerome Gillbard is full of form after leading his WA team to national champions this Easter, and will be joined by the crafty tricks and athleticism of Brodie Roberts. NSW duo Anton Stechiwskyj and Eugene Lee make up the other 2 shooting spots, both who are triple national champions.
The team will again tour with the Diamonds, with their tests against NZ Men’s coinciding with 3 of the Constellation Cup Games. All games will be televised live on Kayo and Kayo Freebies.
Thursday Oct 12 - John Cain Arena MEL
Sunday Oct 15 - Brisbane Ent Centre BNE
Monday Oct 23 - Spark Arena AUK