Netball off menu at Diamonds squad camp

Coach Stacey Marinkovich says netball won't be a focus at her first camp in charge of the Diamonds.
Coach Stacey Marinkovich says netball won't be a focus at her first camp in charge of the Diamonds.

The Stacey Marinkovich era at the Australian Diamonds has begun, but netball is off the menu for her first camp.

Marinkovich, who beat out Melbourne Vixens coach Simone McKinnis for the top role in August, has assembled the Diamonds squad in Noosa for a five-day camp.

But instead of blood, sweat, and tears on the netball court, Marinkovich is using the camp as a bonding opportunity after a physically and mentally draining Super Netball season.

"We're not going close to a netball court," Marinkovich said.

"We'll have plenty of opportunity to do that in January when the group comes together.

"The players have been put through so much in this season, physically and mentally. They've been away from home for a long period of time.

"Whilst we don't have a Diamonds camp on the court, I think we'll all take great learnings from this experience, and it sets a really strong foundation of what we can withstand going forward."

Diamonds vice-captain Liz Watson said it was a nice change, and would allow the group to set the foundations for future success.

"We've been battling against each other all year, but now we're all together we're having a more relaxed camp, which is nice," Watson said.

"We're going on nice walks and cruises and things like that. It's not a typical training camp, which I think the girls are really enjoying.

"(We were) pretty tired mentally and physically (after the season), being away from home for about three months now.

"This is the perfect way to end netball for 2020, and set up what we want to achieve for the next four years as a group."

The 19-player Diamonds squad features five new faces in Verity Charles, Sophie Garbin, Kim Jenner, Cara Koenen, and Maddy Proud.

Caitlin Bassett and Kiera Austin were given permission to attend remotely after the leaving the Super Netball competition bubble.

Australian Associated Press