Netball: Noeline Taurua looking at potential new Silver Fern captain

  • 31/08/2018

The Silver Ferns have their coach - now the hunt is on for a new assistant coach and potentially a new captain.

Noeline Taurua was unveiled as the 11th Silver Ferns coach on Thursday, just days after she had guided the Sunshine Coast Lightning to a successful defence of their Australian Super Netball title.

She replaced Janine Southby, who resigned from the role, after a dismal Commonwealth Games fourth-placing  and an independent review into the campaign.

Taurua expects to announce her assistant coach in the next week, but deciding who will captain the team is another challenge.

Defender Katrina Grant has led the Ferns since 2016, but there are no guarantees she'll keep the arm-band, with former captains Casey Kopua and Laura Langman returning to the national side.

"I think Katrina has done a wonderful job, including with the Pulse," Taurua said.

"As a team, I'd like to see what structures are needed and look at a more collective way of who that person [the captain] will be.

"We need to work with players and the CEO on what leadership and captain structures are needed to be successful.

"That means spending time together to see how people work together with each other and finalise what needs to happen.

"Hopefully, we can do that before the Quad [Series]."

If Taurua wants that done by the Quad Series, she has two weeks, as New Zealand hosts England on September 15 at Spark Arena in the opening game, before taking on South Africa three days later in Tauranga.

Before turning to coaching, Taurua was a goal attack with the Ferns and won a silver medal at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur.

She served as an assistant coach for New Zealand under Ruth Aitken, and had successful stints with the Waikato/Bay of Plenty Magic and Southern Steel.

Her talents were then picked up by the Lightning, where she won back-to-back titles.

Taurua insisted her time in Australia had helped her become a better coach, after missing out on the Silver Ferns job in 2015.

"Back then, I wasn't actively going for the role, because I was actively committed to the organisations I was with at the time.

"Other experiences and opportunities have opened because of me not getting that job.

"I feel like I'm in a better place and have learnt so much, having gotten all this experience under my belt.

"I'm really wrapped I'm here and it feels right."