The Adelaide Thunderbirds roster for the 2019 Suncorp Super Netball season is finalised and features five of South Australia’s exciting netball talents complemented by international calibre players, including one of the world’s highest profile netballers and Commonwealth Games Gold Medallists.
From the start of the recruiting period the Adelaide Thunderbirds showed its intent for the 2019 SSN season securing highly-sought after Jamaican international defender Shamera Sterling.
With the roster now complete Head Coach Tania Obst said the squad is a dream come true.
“I couldn’t be happier with the team we have. I firstly can’t wait to hit the court together in pre-season and then show our supporters and the rest of the netball world what we can achieve in 2019,” she said.
“We have recruited players who strive for excellence and put the team first.
“This will not only set us up for a strong, successful and competitive season, but also for long-term success.
“The team and I are looking forward to producing exciting netball for our members and fans and hearing them cheer throughout the season to bring Priceline Stadium to life.”
Maria Folau (GA, GS)
Maria Folau a New Zealand international shooter and one of the world’s highest profile netballers joins the Adelaide Thunderbirds.
“I will feel like a kid at a new school. I’m so excited to join the team, and really be challenged. It will be a new team, new dynamics, new playing styles, so this is a real game-changer for me to challenge myself and play the best netball that I can,” Folau said.
Sasha Glasgow, (GS, GA)
This season marks Glasgow’s third at the Adelaide Thunderbirds. The young South Australian talent is determined to make her mark on the Australian netball scene and continue to fulfil her childhood dream.
“When I was growing up I watched the likes of Erin Bell, Nat von Bertouch and Carla Borrego and I aspired to be them. To be in the small minority who gets to play for the Adelaide Thunderbirds is a huge honour for me and I take so much pride in wearing the pink dress,” Glasgow said.
Cody Lange (GS, GA)
After two seasons with the Collingwood Magpies, South Australian Cody Lange returns home to the Adelaide Thunderbirds and has her eyes set on being a strong, reliable shooter and target for the team.
“I’m so pumped to return to the Adelaide Thunderbirds and to represent my state again. I’ve been involved in high performance programs for a few years and know I have a lot more in the tank to give,” Lange said.
Born in Murray Bridge, Kelly Altmann – a hard-working midcourter – has impressed in the last two seasons playing for the Southern Force winning consecutive best and fairest.
“I have given netball my absolute all for the past two seasons. I trained really, really hard on the court and did a lot of work behind the scenes. Each week I wanted to put my best out on the court and I am so excited it has paid off,” Altmann said.
Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist Beth Cobden joins the Adelaide Thunderbirds in 2019. Although it’s her first season at the club, Cobden has established successful connections with several players on the 2019 list, joining fellow Roses Chelsea Pitman and Layla Guscoth and her 2018 Loughborough Lightning teammate Shamera Sterling.
“Over the past season I was really happy with how I developed as a player and felt I was learning so much on the international stage and at Loughborough Lightning. I think my vision of the game, the use of my arms and voice, and identifying where I can win ball have all improved. However, I know I have much more to give so I am looking forward to continuing to push myself to become a better athlete in the SSN,” Cobden said.
Hannah Petty (C, WA, WD)
This season is South Australian Hannah Petty’s fourth year with the Adelaide Thunderbirds. After her most consistent season in 2018, Petty is looking to step-up her performance once again.
“I’m looking forward to playing more consistent game time in 2019 and putting out a full 60-minute performance. You can always become a better athlete and over the pre-season I’ll be putting the hard yards in at the gym and learning more about the game so I’m ready to attack the season,” Petty said.
Chelsea Pitman, the club’s 2018 Vice-Captain and MVP for 2017, and a Gold Coast Commonwealth Games gold medallist, said as one of the most senior players she will lead by example and set the standards for the upcoming pre-season.
“I’ll be pushing that everyone works hard in the gym and on the training track. Working hard in pre-season puts you in good stead to build the trust and foundations required for a good season,” Pitman said.
Layla Guscoth, who lined up in goal defence for the Roses throughout the recent Quad Series, has come off an exceptional season in the Vitality Netball Superleague playing for Team Bath where she was named in the All Star VII team.
“Signing with the Adelaide Thunderbirds is a great opportunity to work with Tania Obst who is a great coach, and to play and train with great netballers including some of my Roses teammates and top defenders in Kate Shimmin and Shamera Sterling. The Thunderbirds have an exciting vision and I am thrilled to be a part of it all,” Guscoth said.
South Australian defender Shimmin was the stand-out player in the Thunderbirds’ 2018 season, holding her own against the world’s best shooters and continually producing intercepts and finishing the season with 13 blocks, the highest of any player.
“There are 10 positions in the team and I’m competing against netballers across the world for my spot, which makes it even more special to me that I’m representing my home state at this level. I first joined the Thunderbirds in 2010 and have been part of the club in the successful times and throughout disappointing seasons. There is nothing I want more than to be part of making the club great again,” Shimmin said.
Shamera Sterling made her name on the world stage playing in the Jamaican team that claimed the bronze medal at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, where she topped the competition’s intercept count. After dominating in defence in the 2018 Vitality Netball Superleague, this is Sterling’s first season in the SSN.
“What excites me is that I get to play against big-name shooters like Jhaniele Fowler, Romelda Aiken and Caitlin Bassett – playing against these shooters will improve my game. I’m also willing to work hard and know I can only get better.”
Register your interest here to become an Adelaide Thunderbirds member for the 2019 season.