Key staff appointed at Strikers for 2024
TWO key roles at the Bendigo Strikers have been announced as the freshly minted local clubs prepares to debut in the Victorian Netball League in 2024.
Tracey Brereton has been named as the coach for the Strikers’ championship division squad.
She comes to the role after spending time in 2023 as the state’s 17 & Under Victorian state coach and assistant coach of Netball Victoria’s Fury which participated in the Australian Netball Championships.
“I am so excited about this opportunity,” she said. “I understand the barriers for country-based athletes, I understand the passion for major regional centres, and more than anything I love seeing country athletes achieve.
“I have seen some amazing athletes, and whilst watching the Bendigo Football Netball League and the Goulburn Valley League grand finals… is proof that there is so much talent across regional Victoria.
“Athletes have connection to their regions in so many ways from growing up, having family, to holiday destinations, and our aim is to pull together a team of skilled athletes to represent Bendigo Strikers with passion, fight and pride.
“I encourage athletes to consider Bendigo Strikers because the story is good, and we are ready to make it great.”
Board chair Andrew Cooney said it was great to have someone with such experience join the Strikers.
“To have someone with a strong coaching and playing history to give our players the opportunity to develop and be mentored by someone who has a passion for netball and a passion for regional athletes is very special,” said Mr Cooney.
Brereton played State League and was also in the Melbourne Phoenix and Melbourne Kestrels at other points in her netball career. She has coached the Shepparton Bears for the past 16 years.
The club has also revealed who take on the job as director of coaching with Carol Cathcart to fulfill the role as the Strikers head into their first season.
Cathcart has experience working in development roles with Netball Australia, has coached the national 21 & Under squad, Victorian Fury, Perth Orioles and has been assistant coach at the Melbourne Vixens.
In 2023 she coached Sandhurst’s 17 & Under side to the BFNL grand final.
“I am so excited about this opportunity,” Cathcart said. “I understand the challenges for country-based athletes and why this is such a great opportunity for our athletes. I feel privileged to be part of the program.
“I have watched the youth of this area closely over the past ten years. I can’t wait to see them flourish in an elite program.
“I have also mentored Tracey in past roles and I am thrilled with this head coach appointment for the Bendigo Strikers.
“Tracey is a passionate, knowledgeable coach who I am excited to be working with to develop this program.”