Lions ready to roar into finals contention

Chloe Curran Sunbury Lions
Chloe Curran takes a strong catch against Redan. Photo: Shawn Smits

Disjointed is the word the Sunbury Lions use to describe their first 12 rounds of the Ballarat Netball League season.

A combination of new players, Victorian Netball League commitments and two players having babies has meant the Lions haven’t had a full squad to choose from this season. Despite this, the team is sitting fourth on the ladder, 8-4.

Defender Rebecca Anstey said considering the interrupted start, it was all positive so far.

Anstey, who’s own late start was due to having a baby, was one of three players who remained from last year’s team, which finished runners-up.

“There is a really good feel around the club,” Anstey said.

“We have a lot of young girls coming into the team and each of the younger girls have been good in their own right. We have three strong shooters, three strong defenders and strength in the midcourt, we have a lot of depth.”

She said that depth had proved to be the side’s strength as they prepare to make finals again.

“It’s a little trial and error to find the strongest line-up. The way we might line up may be different from one week to another.”

First-year coach Adam Boldiston said it was good to have players such as Anstey and Prue Stanley in the side.

“Beck has done well to get back on court so soon after a C-section and is starting to get her footwork back.

“Prue was a different situation with a surrogate from America [having her baby] so she missed five to six weeks.

“Their presence and leadership on the court is something we miss when they aren’t there.

“As I haven’t coached against all of these sides before, I go to them to ask what they can tell me about them.”

He said he hoped to have a full team within the next month.

“We are starting to see a more settled line-up. We’ll be able to have a few more training sessions together to work on things.”

Boldiston said he was excited with what he has seen so far

“While the majority of the side is VNL players they are very young. Without Prue and Beck the eldest is 22. There’s a good blend of youth and experience.”

On Saturday the Lions defeated Redan 45-37.