Sport

Moama lands gun coach

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January 25, 2018

Tatura A-grade best-and-fairest winner Jacqui James has transferred to the Murray Netball League to coach reining premiers Moama.

Moama has lured Tatura best-and-fairest winner Jacqui James to become its new coach, adding to an already dangerous arsenal of talented players.

But premiership-winning Magpies coach Charlotte Long is not going anywhere, remaining as a player.

A-grade premiership player Cindy Kusli will coach B-grade, while Erica Smith will coach C and C-reserve, assisted by Joce Humbert.

The Magpies lost just once in last year on their way to a 41-31 grand final win against Tongala, with 10 wins coming by 30 goals or more.

Netball executive committee member and coaches co-ordinator Brontie Coates was thrilled the club had replaced its premiership coach so well.

‘‘We’re really happy, we’ve worked hard to get someone to fill the role left vacant by Charlotte,’’ she said.

‘‘Jacqui’s name was brought up and we’re happy with the experience and knowledge she brings to the club.

‘‘And it’s the same with Cindy, she was a part of our A-grade premiership, and when we found out a bit more about her background we realised how much knowledge she brings to the side.’’

James had initially been announced as a Tatura B-reserve co-coach, but a move to the twin towns changed plans.

‘‘Jacqui has moved to Echuca-Moama, and played at Tatura last season,’’ Coates said.

‘‘Her name was brought up, but we thought she was committed to play there again.

‘‘Charlotte spoke with her and she was interested in speaking with us, and in the end she thought it would be easier living here to coach here as well.

‘‘We’re really excited to see what she can do with the side, and the girls know they have to start again this season and have a lot to work on.’’

Long cited personal reasons for not pursuing the top job, but James said her commitment to the club had not wavered.

‘‘It’s for personal reasons, but she let us know before Christmas, and has been a big part of helping to find the replacement,’’ she said.

‘‘Charlotte was amazing for our club. She didn’t just bring her knowledge and skills to the club, as soon as she announced she was coaching, players came back to play with her.

‘‘We couldn’t be happier with what she did in helping to bring that first premiership to the club.’’

Long will remain with the club as a player, as will most of the premiership-winning side.

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