Why are the Firebirds run so poorly?

Why are the Firebirds run so poorly?2024-04-04T11:38:13+10:00
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  • deucelow
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      The Firebirds recruitment has been awful over the past few years and as a group they have massively underperformed.

      Wallam is a success story of course, but ironically not a Queensland success story. The club stuck with Gabi Simpson and Romelda Aiken for too long. The recruitment of Eboni Usoro-Brown was appalling list management. The investment of playing time in young players has been haphazard and scattershot in approach for many years.

      There is absolutely no excuse for the club not committing to a rebuild around good, young talent years ago. The North Brisbane Cougars have won three local premierships in a row, have maybe the best netball coach in Queensland in charge and have one of the best talent development pipelines in the country.

      The team that won the first of those premierships is worth listing from 2021.
      Reilley Batcheldor
      Mia Stower
      Leesa Mi Mi
      Hulita Veve
      Macy Gardner
      Charlie Bell
      Martina Reekers
      Ava Black
      Ruby Bakewell-Doran
      Ashleigh Ervin
      Remi Kamo

      That’s some list for a local comp grand final huh. Sadly more of these girls figure to help the Lightning than the Firebirds. Kamo and Bakewell-Doran obviously should have been playing together at SSN level some time ago, ahead of giving a spot to an English veteran with little left in the tank in Usoro-Brown. Stower does not have an SSN spot this season, all the time the Firebirds invested there has been wasted or will benefit someone else ala Kim Jenner.

      It’s galling to see a team like the Thunderbirds win it all with some inspired foreign players and the best local talent they can find whilst the Firebirds go nowhere. What would the Magpies or Mavericks have given for access to a talent pipeline like this one?

      netballgirl
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        Post count: 372

        IMO the Firebirds relied heavily on Geitz and Bueta. When they left they had no answer. There also seems like an issue with management, people look unhappy and Bully looks frustrated and it’s reflecting badly on the girls.

        Unsure why they can’t or haven’t tried recruiting international players, they could’ve picked up Dehaney, Fadoju?
        There all Aussie side needs some flare because Bueta isn’t coming back.

        Also what I find is strange is why have the firebirds lost all the qld talent to the Lightning? Is the culture that bad, is it the mean girls club? They seem very cliquey and if you’re not in the cool group you feel left out?

        deucelow
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          Post count: 8

          Also what I find is strange is why have the firebirds lost all the qld talent to the Lightning? Is the culture that bad, is it the mean girls club? They seem very cliquey and if you’re not in the cool group you feel left out?

          Seems there is definitely a culture problem. Leesa Mi Mi and Charlie Bell both bolted the Firebirds system to go over to the Lightning. There aren’t any girls going in the other direction.

          I mentioned Mia Stower. She has no SSN deal this year and is playing for her mother who is a coach at the Bond University Bull Sharks. Her mother had some revealing quotes.

          Bec Stower couldn’t be happier to see her daughter join the Bull Sharks’ squad, especially after such a tumultuous year.

          “Mia has lived and breathed netball for a very long time, she worked so hard, travelled so many kilometres, and shown so much resilience. She has always been a team first player, for way longer than it’s been fashionable I might add! She has sat behind Gretel and watched and learned, waiting for her opportunity. Firebirds was her home and where she wanted to be, so to be told she was no longer required was heartbreaking for her, and very hard for me to watch. She was basically awarded the ‘best human award’ at the Firebirds in 2022, and was named in the leadership team in 2023, so she was primed and ready to make her mark on Super Netball in 2024. But sport can be so brutal. It just wasn’t meant to be.”

          She says Mia’s arrival at Bond played out very differently to how people might assume.

          “To be honest I didn’t even know if she would play netball anymore. That’s how upset she was [after the Firebirds delisted her]. But I gave her space to self-reflect and work out what was important to her. She decided that she just wanted to be close to family to help get her mojo and love for the game back.”

          Being proximate to family was one thing, but her final playing destination was still far from certain.

          “I assumed Mia would head back to Brisbane North Cougars for the 2024 season even though I did jokingly pull the ‘but I gave birth to you!’ card!” she says.

          “Mia previously found her netballing home at Cougars and I credit her ability to take the next step to the Firebirds to Liz White and Amanda Vanderwal, her coaches there.”

          The Firebirds seem more interested in bringing girls home to Queensland who had already left – Rav, Tippah – than developing the plentiful young talent already available locally. Losing both Mi Mi girls is a red flag for me – Leesa would rather sit behind Liz Watson than compete for an in theory easier starting spot at Firebirds?

          The Firebirds should sack the entire front office and hand the team over to Cougars coach White. With seventeen premierships in twenty three years and a development record like the one I’ve mentioned I think she’d have brought success years ago. The current Firebirds administration is massively underachieving and there is no legitimate reason why that should be happening.

          tina_138
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            Post count: 82

            Also, the Fever’s current assistant coach …didn’t she use to be assistant to Bec Bulley before something happened..

            netballgirl
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              Post count: 372

              She certainly did!!
              Judging from tonight’s game Bully doesn’t have a clue what she’s doing. When either wallam or dwan was sent off they couldn’t compete. Instead of Moore they should’ve picked up an international shooter such as Maseko or Taljaard.

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