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AdzelmoParticipantMay 10, 2021 at 12:25 pmPost count: 12
In response to your comment al_ex regarding Honey over Mundy….. as a WA specialist myself I would take Mundy every day of the week. She has much better timing and vision and finesse on the feeds than Honey. Honey is a great athlete but doesn’t appear to have the court craft and netball brain that Mundy has. Honey has also been in the Vixens’ environment for a number of years and hasn’t set the world on fire so I fully support Simone’s decision to develop Mundy.
Mundy has a lot more upsideAdzelmoParticipantMay 10, 2021 at 12:21 pmPost count: 12
Just wanted to touch on your comment about Mundy only having 7 GAs for the game. You have to remember that if the shooter is contacted or offloads to the other shooter, then even though the player fed the ball to the shooter they don’t get credited with a GA. The stats show that Mundy and Moloney shared the feeding (Mundy 22, Moloney 24) and the shooters also did a lot of shooter to shooter passes in this game (Mweai 7, Ruby 12, Stanton 3).AdzelmoParticipantMay 6, 2021 at 1:55 pmPost count: 12AdzelmoParticipantMay 6, 2021 at 12:53 pmPost count: 12AdzelmoParticipantDecember 1, 2020 at 2:37 pmPost count: 12
There are growing concerns about instability at netball’s highest levels ahead of a crucial series of negotiations that will define the sport’s future.
Netball Australia chief executive Marne Fechner and Super Netball chief executive Chris Symington both resigned in the space of seven days earlier in November.
The Weekend Australian understands that Symington’s role will not be filled, with Netball Australia bringing leadership of the league back in-house. There are also hard questions being asked about the future of Super Netball’s independent commission, chaired by Marina Go. That commission is barely a year old.
Administrators, players and coaches are all extremely concerned about the sense that the sport is going backwards at the worst possible time.
Multiple senior figures described the current situation as a fire sale. There are more significant staffing cuts expected at Netball Australia in December.
When asked, Netball Australia insisted the Super Netball commission had a rock-solid future, and that other staffing changes were simply a reflection of the same constraints hitting all sports this year.
Netball Australia has no major commercial, broadcast, or player deals struck beyond 2021, and had hoped to pin down much of that framework over the coming summer. But delays forced by COVID make it unlikely that any new agreements will be struck before the start of the next Super Netball season.
The process of negotiating those new deals will be led by interim Netball Australia chief executive Ron Steiner, until a new boss is hired later in 2021.
The most crucial piece of the puzzle is a new broadcast agreement, with clubs hoping for a substantial improvement on the current deal that has been in place since 2017.
That deal, struck with the Nine Network and Telstra, provides netball with no guaranteed cash flow. Instead, profits from sponsorship and advertising revenue are split between the broadcasters and the sport.
This structure was viewed as revolutionary when announced. It has delivered substantial commercial growth and a long-coveted place on a free-to-air network’s main channel, but that has come at a heavy cost.
While Netball Australia has handed every club an annual grant to cover a substantial portion of player wages, teams are still required to cover much of the remaining overheads, including stadium hire fees.
No Super Netball team is turning a profit. Some have lost close to $1m a season, with most bleeding at least half that rate.
While some supporters of the Super Netball structure insist that it was never going to be profitable after a handful of years, there is now a broad acknowledgment that the league’s commercial trajectory has fallen short of expectations.
“This is new. Suncorp Super Netball and moving away from the ANZ Championship, there was lots that we learned from that experience in terms of expectations of growth, and where we pitch this,” Fechner said.
Netball Victoria chief executive Rosie King described the targets set for broadcast audiences as aspirational.
“This joint venture (with Nine) was considered to be very innovative at the time, with the profit share piece. We said at the time that, look, it’s really only going to be innovative if it works. And there’s been no money back to the teams.”
Six of the league’s eight teams are run by state netball organisations, underpinned by a large pool of association fees and money collected from the sport’s grassroots.
That has created a dynamic whereby the losses of netball’s elite competition, developed as a commercial product, are being propped up by money drawn from local clubs.
“As a member organisation, when we look at our grassroots community, we’ve effectively taken out $1m a year from investing back into the community. And you can bet your bottom dollar that there would be some in the community who would say, ‘I would much rather that money come back into our development’,” said King.
Super Netball is now stuck in an awkward phase. It has grown far beyond the footprint that the previous ANZ Championship held in Australia’s sporting landscape, but has not reached a scale required to attract the kind of sponsorship and commercial revenue that could balance the books.
The multitude of decisions facing the league now largely boil down to one big call: having fallen short of ambitious aspirations, is it time to recalibrate and pursue a more conservative approach? Or is it time to back in the model with the confidence that a better-resourced Super Netball could break through to a new level?
“Super Netball hit with a blast, it’s plateaued, and now we need to go again,” outgoing Netball NSW boss Carolyn Campbell said.
Campbell said she was hopeful a restructured deal could deliver positive growth, but it was vital to turn Super Netball into a stronger commercial asset.
Netball Australia is also clearly committed to a continued push for growth.
“We’re not going to want to go backwards,” Symington says. “So there’s obviously a commitment from Netball Australia and Suncorp Super Netball to make sure that this remains the best competition in the world. We need to be smart about how we do that.”
There is a deeper fight in the background of these discussions, around the scope for ambition in a cash-strapped game. Leaders at the national and state level have pushed hard to keep netball at the forefront of an increasingly competitive women’s sporting landscape. Their stated aim is for Super Netball to be the world’s best women’s competition, and for netballers to be the best-paid female athletes in Australia.
Rosie King emphasised the importance of those high-profile players for the sport’s future.
“The next (collective player’s agreement) has been held off until we get the broadcast deal done. So we need the broadcast deal to be better, so that we can pay the players more.
‘Otherwise what will happen is that the profile of the netball athlete being well remunerated will be a thing of the past, we will be an also-ran.”
But others inside the sport say this is exactly the kind of wishful thinking that has left the league bleeding money, and netball needs to come to terms with the fact that it can’t compete financially with larger Australian sports.
One possible circuit breaker in this debate is privatisation, a major topic of conversation this year. Private investment in teams, or the league itself, could deliver a much-needed shot in the arm and remove that financial burden currently placed on the sport’s grassroots.
Symington and Fechner said it was too early to know if privatisation was a good fit for netball, but would not rule it out.
Any pitch to private equity could be complicated by Collingwood’s calamitous entry into netball. The financial losses suffered by the Magpies are among the highest in the league, and the team has constantly struggled for success on the court despite a cavalcade of high-profile signings.
It could be difficult to drum up more investment in Super Netball as persistent doubts hang over the future of the competition’s largest private partner.
As one senior administrator explained, no one has to walk into an Australian boardroom and convince them of the value of cricket, or rugby league. But netball leaders feel like they are constantly having to sell the game to their own partners.
Teams had no say in the previous round of negotiations, and are frustrated that they have no insight into the plan for the upcoming deal.
Netball Australia is currently completing a major state-of-the-game review, led by former Diamond Liz Ellis.AdzelmoParticipantNovember 17, 2020 at 1:18 pmPost count: 12
Great to see all signings are locked in!
Don’t know anything about Latanya Wilson but I would think Tania Obst knows a bit about her having coached against her at the WYC. She could be another exciting defender like Jodi-Anne Ward.
As for the young local talent who have missed out (Orr, Allen, Blackman, Honey…the list goes on), at the end of the day this is a professional league and not a league to develop young talent. Some of these young players were given opportunities to train/play in the professional environments this year (and last) and obviously haven’t shown enough yet to warrant a contract for next year. Hopefully they will get TP roles at clubs to continue their development.
NB: I’m a real fan of Nyah Allen and was hoping Vixens would sign her instead of Stanton but obviously Vixens decided they needed experience in that end of the court.
Looking forward to a shorter pre-season and an earlier start to the 2021 season!AdzelmoParticipantOctober 12, 2020 at 3:47 pmPost count: 12
Thought I would add my two cents worth….
I totally respect that there are 2 sides to every story, however I am strongly inclined to believe the CBass version is closer to the truth.
Anyone who has been around netball in NSW knows that Julie Fitzgerald has a reputation for playing favourites.
I am close with several people who have experienced this first-hand throughout their playing careers. They were treated with a total lack of respect and they are some of the most easy-going, hard-working players you would ever meet (no attitude or expectation of court time).
It’s time for NSW to move Julie along and bring in the next Briony
AdzelmoParticipantSeptember 21, 2020 at 4:44 pmPost count: 12
- This reply was modified 7 months ago by Adzelmo.
I’m not surprised by this at all. I think Pitman is very overrated and has a very high turnover count and has been like this for a number of years. I will say, she has been better this year, but there has still been several games this year where I have wanted to see her replaced due to her high turnover count.
Just putting it out there but I have a strong feeling that Maddy Proud might be returning home. It would be a very smart move for both parties as it means Maddy wouldn’t be fighting for court time like she does at Swifts, and Thunderbirds get a fantastic player and leader back in the midcourt…… fingers crossed!AdzelmoParticipantSeptember 16, 2020 at 11:43 amPost count: 12
I too think Hadley is overrated at test level.
She is one of those players who is very good at National level but it doesn’t translate on the international stage.
Charles could be a smokey for the squad as she has been in great form this year and last and obviously has the connection with the coach.AdzelmoParticipantSeptember 15, 2020 at 5:46 pmPost count: 12AdzelmoParticipantSeptember 15, 2020 at 5:45 pmPost count: 12
We must be watching an entirely different Jo Weston’s. The Jo Weston I have watched this year has only had 2 decent games. The rest of the time she has been very ineffective and I am fairly confident that’s the reason Simone has moved Eddy into the circle. Lol …. each to their own
I’d actually have Klau ahead of Weston based on form throughout the season. Klau has just been let down by a lack of defensive assistance from WD and sometimes GD.AdzelmoParticipantSeptember 15, 2020 at 11:20 amPost count: 12
Gotta say I am quite shocked with Weston being unanimous. I think she has been very average for the majority of the season. Eddy has been far supreme when she has shifted to GD.
Based on form I would have Jenner at GD.
As for the rest of my team if it’s based purely on form this season…
GS Koenan (unless Thwaites makes herself available)
GA Austin (Wood very close now that she is coming back into form)
C JLP (I’m a Vixens fan but just get very frustrated with Moloney’s lack of finesse and confidence on the feed) (Maddy Proud is close for me too)
WD Eddy (Parmenter for impact to win the ball)
GK Bruce (gets in by a whisker ahead of Mannix as I just feel she has more of a presence on court)
Bassett (if thwaites isn’t available)
Moloney/Proud (depending on how the play in finals)
Weston misses out as Eddy can slide between all 3 defensive positions.