Netball: Singapore, with 5 new faces on board, will field new-look squad at Asian Championship

Members of Netball Singapore train at OCBC Arena, on Nov 28, 2017.
Members of Netball Singapore train at OCBC Arena, on Nov 28, 2017.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Five new players will represent Singapore at the M1 Asian Netball Championship here in September.

Netball Singapore on Friday (May 18) revealed that the national squad for the Sept 1-9 tournament comprises 17 players who were selected after last weekend's Netball Super League.

Shooters Tan Xin Yi, 21, and Lee Pei Shan, the youngest in the team at 18, are two of the five new faces in the team. The other three are mid-court player Amelia Wijendra, 23, and defenders Ayshath Zaseela and Khor Ting Fang, aged 19 and 22 respectively.

The five are also part of a provisional squad of 14 who have been selected to attend a training tour in Sri Lanka from May 26 to June 1. The team will then head to Auckland for another training trip in July.

They will be led by captain Vanessa Lee, Nurul Baizura and Charmaine Soh, who have a combined 283 international caps.

Said national head coach Natalie Milicich: "I am really excited about this 'new-look' team. We have a younger side with some size and enthusiasm that will contribute to building a strong team culture.

"Change brings new challenges for players and new opportunities to grow. I really trust these players to do the job and we will be working very hard on our structures and combinations in preparation for a successful campaign at the M1 Asian Netball Championship."

The M1 Asian Netball Championship is the regional qualifier for next year's Netball World Cup in Liverpool, for which the top two teams will qualify.

Milicich, who joined the national set-up last September, has set her charges a target of a top-two finish at the Asian Championship, which is her second tournament as head coach.

Three-time Asian champions Singapore last won the title in 2014 and were third at the last edition in 2016.

The tournament, now in its 11th edition, will see more than 10 countries competing at the OCBC Arena.