Western Border exit paves way for new champ

The annual fight for the SA Country Championships will be an open one with the reigning champions Western Border Netball Association not fielding a side in the A Grade competition this weekend.

The Western Border senior side has been the recent dominators of the statewide event, winning the last two titles, but the big names will not return to defend their crown due to a lack of numbers with injuries and work commitments getting in the way.

However, the association will still be present during the massive long weekend of netball fielding five junior teams, including two in the 13 and 15 and Under competitions.

But the WBNA’s absence from the top grade opens the door for the Mid South East and Kowree Naracoorte Tatiara Netball Associations to swoop in and steal the crown.

The KNTNA A Grade team will fancy its chances in particular after coming so close to the trophy last year.

The 2021 SA Country Championships finale was one to remember with the result not being decided until the last 10 seconds.

In the end the cool head of West Gambier’s Lisa McGregor ensured the Western Border’s reign continued.

However, with the previous winners not returning, the KNTNA hopes its squad can go one better.

This year’s team features 10 players including big names such as Ella Mould, Danielle Vankalken, Tyler Atkinson and Sophie Henschke, who will be led into battle by coach Georgia Cadzow.

The KNTNA will also be in action in the three junior grades.

The Mid South Eastern Netball Association also hopes to go as far as possible under the guidance of Kim Ross.

Robe’s Ross is coaching the A Grade team which also features players from Tantanoola, Hatherleigh and Mount Burr.

Eight players will be making the trip in the Senior side including Madi Haggett, Demi Vanderhorst and Emma Gould.

The MSENA will also feature teams in three junior grades.

The annual competition is the biggest netball event held in South Australia with over 1000 players from 26 country associations descending on the city this weekend.

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