Two of Cobram’s most exciting netball prospects have been selected to represent the Murray league’s Under-17 Representative Side.
Lili Murphy and Lillieth Ukich, who play locally for Cobram Football and Netball Club, were chosen after impressing at trials in Numurkah. Both have prior experience in representative netball.
To make the grade is quite an extensive process so the girls’ efforts are not to be taken lightly.
A couple of players from each team in the Murray league are chosen by their respective club to attend trials in Numurkah, of which there are five. Once the trials are completed, a squad of 12 players is finalised.
The representative team plays in a tournament format to allow the girls to keep playing club netball. They will play in three tournaments and, depending on how well the team goes, will potentially play in a fourth tournament in Melbourne against their city counterparts.
Lili said based on previous experiences, the chance to play in the Melbourne tournament would be huge for both girls’ development.
‘‘When I went there in 2015 it was the best of the best, we got thrashed,’’ Lili said.
‘‘It was a really high standard because you are playing against all the metropolitan teams.’’
The initial tournaments will see the the two up-and-coming netballers compete against regions such as Wangaratta, Shepparton, Albury-Wodonga and the Goulburn Valley. Each tournament is played over the course of one day with a handful of games taking place, meaning it can become a battle of attrition.
Both girls said there were multiple benefits to playing in representative sides, such as learning off new coaches and forming new friendships.
In regard to their qualities as netballers, Lillieth plays the role of goal shooter while Lili does her best work at the other end of the court, swapping between goal shooter and goal keeper.
Lillieth has an interesting take on how a netballer finds their position.
‘‘If you are tall you end up staying in the ring your whole career,’’ she said with a laugh.
She described her greatest asset as having the ability to rebound well, while Lili said her defensive positioning was probably her strongest point.
While happy representing Cobram for now, the passionate netballers said if the chance was to arise, they would be eager to play at the highest level possible.
After both getting a taste of senior action last year, Lili and Lillieth are keen to push on, play more senior netball and learn off the experienced players at the club to enhance their skills.