Home > News and Publications > Archive > JUN23 > Netballers Reflect On Overseas Experience

Netballers Reflect On Overseas Experience

Reflection on Fuel to Go & Play Association Championships

Written by:
Nina Joseph
Netball Academy, Secondary 3
with contributions from: Sophie Tan Ying Er, Taryn Kum-Thomas (both Secondary 2), Danya Chua, Chua Jing Rou (both Secondary 3) and Tan Zhi Ting (Secondary 4)

On behalf of the Netball Academy, I would like to share my experience of participating in the Fuel to Go & Play Association Championships held in Perth, Western Australia from 3 to 5 June 2023.

Our school sent two teams – the Under-14 team consisting of seven Secondary 2 and one Secondary 1 student-athletes and the Under-16 team consisting of five Secondary 3 and five Secondary 4 student-athletes. It was an eye-opener for us as this tournament was held at Matthews Netball Centre, which was almost as big as 50 outdoor netball courts.

We had two training sessions to prepare ourselves for the games. On the third day, the competition officially began with a short but formal Opening Ceremony marked by the teams’ march-past and speeches by the organiser.

Both teams fought hard with a lot of grit in the chilly and blustery weather conditions, which we were not accustomed to. The Under-14 team managed to pull through two wins, while the Under-16 pulled through one win and one draw.

“I can’t believe we actually won some games against the Australians,” said Della Zuliyah Zulkifli from the Under-14 team.

Everyone became more closely bonded after the competition, and we were all extremely proud of each other for the tremendous amount of hard work that was put in by everyone.

However, it was far from a smooth journey. We faced many obstacles and challenges along the way. For instance, halfway through the competition on the second and third day, it began pouring and strong winds were almost blowing us off our feet. The courts were wet, and the ball kept slipping off everybody’s hands. Even then, the games continued.

Being pushed out of our comfort zones, we persevered through the harsh conditions. The opponents gave us a good challenge by playing with the same determination that we were playing with. We were giving each other a hard time and pushing each other to give our best effort on the courts.

On one of the days, we also had the golden opportunity to watch an elite netball match live between two professional teams – the Westcoast Fever and the Goldcoast Lightning. The teams exhibited a great game, with Westcoast Fever winning by a few goals. What a game! It was like a dream come true for all of us! Besides that, we also were lucky enough to sit in to watch one of their training sessions. Most people would call it boring, but I learnt so much in a short span of time from the professional players, and it was thoroughly enjoyable to see how flawlessly they were playing. I was over the moon when I realised we could get pictures and autographs.

Here are some of reflections by the teams:

Under-14 Team

“I would say that this trip was a really good experience, we learned to climatise to the changes to the best of our abilities and to persevere no matter how hard the challenges were.” – Taryn Kum-Thomas

“There were so many things that I got to experience and do for the first time, which really made me step out of my comfort zone and just try” – Sophie Tan

Under-16 Team

“It was an amazing experience because we got more exposure playing in different conditions and against people from different countries. We got to watch professional netball and the elites’ training as well” – Lim Zhi Ting

“Everyone was happy with the team’s performance as a whole.” – Chua Jing Rou

“It was a really good experience for me, my seniors, my juniors and my batchmates as we managed to overcome multiple challenges and learnt useful life skills during the competition season.” – Danya Chua

As for me, even though it was incredibly difficult to concentrate on the games as we had to adjust to all the changes and weather conditions, I could speak for all of us that we all collectively gained very useful life skills including cooking and planning meals for ourselves throughout the trip. Another takeaway from the trip is to learn how to work together with one another, and how to relax and have fun, even in stressful situations.

Off the court, there were a lot of other activities that we indulged in besides the competition. On the first day, we went on a hike to Reabold Hill Summit Boardwalk and caught some beautiful sceneries that we can rarely catch sight of in Singapore. This experience was very new and exciting for me because I managed to spot many exotic animals and plants, such as the black and white magpies. I was surprised to see how big the birds were in Perth as compared to Singapore. I know that I am not speaking for myself, as my senior, Angelina, from the Under-16 team exclaimed: “I have never seen such birds before. I was so scared to even go anywhere near them. They were so humongous!” – Nina Joseph

Continue Reading →

Don't miss out on the latest Sports, Academics and other school news!
Don't miss out on the latest Sports, Academics and other school news!
Caption text