Narre Warren Football Netball Club have enjoyed a superb run in season 2022, with undefeated campaigns across senior football and A grade netball.
A major component of this can be attributed to a strong pre-season campaign across the club which saw some improvement in fitness and skills that enables them to attack the year the same way they did in 2021.
Club president Stuart Stephenson is impressed with the Magpies ladder-leading performance, but more simply, is just glad to be out playing again following the disruptions of the last two years.
“It’s great to see our players enjoying their sport, socialising with each other and around the club,” he said.
“I enjoy watching us play, the way we have been moving the ball into the forward line has worked really well and the guys have got some great systems in place.”
The Magpies have performed well as a team which has seen great coordination from defence right down to the forward line, but there are some standouts across both disciplines of sport who have shone this year.
From a netball sense, Gabrielle Dwyer moved to defence this year and has responded well to the challenge, while Chelsea Tonna has stepped up to perform well as a shooter.
In football, several of the young umpires have really flourished this year with the likes of Lachie Benson moving into the ruck over the last few weeks which has enabled Jake Richardson to stay in the forward line.
Trent Cody and Kurt Mutimer have been outstanding while Joel Zietsman has performed well in defence.
The change in structure to premier division has seen great competition, with Stephenson himself really enjoying the standard of football and netball.
“The league has made a great effort to encourage the teams to get going,” he said.
From what we’ve encountered so far, Monbulk really challenged us in Round Two, Olinda Ferny Creek were good for a large part of the game on Saturday, Pakenham are a fit young team and Wandin are going to be tough to beat at home when we play them later in the year.
“I think there’s great depth in our opposition this year.”
While clearly at the top of their game, the Magpies are committed to improving every week as they cannot afford to rest on its laurels if they are to contend when the finals come around later in the year.
The club president is thankful to all players, coaches, committee members and volunteers for their input which has contributed to the strong campaign to date but emphasised his appreciation for two volunteers who put their hand up to help every week.
“I would like to thank our volunteers generally but Maree who runs our canteen and Darryl who runs the bar have gone above and beyond for us,” Stephenson explained.
“They also help out at the many functions we have and are the first people here to put up their hand to help clean up on Sunday.”