Strikers stock up with premiership winners

November 17, 2023 BY

Chemistry: Ruby Turner and Imogen Sexton (right) have spent time down back for Sandhurst’s A Grade team, now the pair have been named on the first Bendigo Strikers squad. Photo: FILE

THERE are plenty of premiership winners in the Bendigo Strikers inaugural squad that’s competing in next year’s Victorian Netball League.

Five clubs from across central and northern Victoria are represented in the Championship Division squad of 11 announced on Friday by Strikers president Melinda Keighran.

A talented line-up includes Sandhurst clubmates Heather Oliver, Charlotte and Imogen Sexton, Ruby Turner and Meg Williams.

Also keen to make their mark with the Strikers will be Kangaroo Flat’s Ash Ryan, Chelsea Sartori and Milly Wicks.

Strikers’ coach Tracey Brereton and the recruiting team also signed up Tongala’s Milly Brock, Rochester’s Teal Hocking, and Bridget Furphy from Moama who is now at Bell Park.

Wicks will be a VNL rookie, but is surrounded by team-mates who have racked up many matches in the league which is played on Wednesday night and begins in March.

“This is a quality team with a mix of local, out of town, and Victorian Netball League experience,” Keighran said.

“Their ability to mix it at the top is so exciting for us. A goal is to play some games at Red Energy Arena in Bendigo.”

Keighran said the VNL experience would be a huge plus for all Strikers players and their clubs.

“This is a great opportunity for the top netballers from across central and northern Victoria to train in Bendigo and play against many of the best in Victoria,” she said.

Strikers coach Tracey Brereton said the squad was finalised after a series of fitness tests at Latrobe University Bendigo.

“We have 11 quality athletes, and quality people with a mindset to keep improving whilst achieving,” Brereton said.

“We believe this team has a great mix of experience and enthusiasm and a strong connection to our region.”

Pre-season training for the Strikers will be on Wednesday nights.

Key off-court players for the club include Patrick Blood at Latrobe University, and Jake Pallpratt from Healthy Mates.

The Bendigo Strikers championship squad are: Milly Brock – Tongala, Bridget Furphy – Bell Park, Teal Hocking – Rochester, Heather Oliver, Imogen Sexton, Charlotte Sexton, Ruby Turner, Meg Williams – Sandhurst, Milly Wicks, Ash Ryan, Chelsea Sartori – Kangaroo Flat.