The Wairarapa College Senior Gold Coast Netball team, clockwise from left of pole: Paris Potangaroa, Bonnie Taia, Rosa Day, Pele Malatai, Claire Harlick, Ruby Morrison, Paige Fergusson-Smith, Sarah Hull, Madeline Anderson, Madison Castles, Jenna Mullen. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
The Wairarapa College Senior Gold Coast Netball team will get a taste of international competition as they head to Surfers Paradise today to attend the World Sport Netball Carnival.
The event has a proud 14-year history and more than 60 teams from around the world will be there to compete.
The tournament is held over 10 days and is focused on spirit and sportsmanship.
Team manager Deb Castles said they were looking forward to representing the region.
“Wairarapa College netball has not participated for many years and we will be proudly representing not only our college but also our town and province.
“By attending this event Wairarapa will be displayed on an international stage.”
There is a rugby tournament that is played at the same time, which the Waicol First XV attended last year.
The netball team has been fundraising for the trip since October, with raffles, car washes and pie sales among the various fundraisers.
“The team is made up of 11 Year 12 and Year 13 Wairarapa College senior netball players, so over and above training for the Gold Coast team, the girls had commitments to their respective college teams also,” Castles said.
“There are 20 senior teams competing in our division and the team will also participate in the annual Beach Games with all the netball and rugby teams, as well as attending the Spirit and Sportsmanship Dinner at the Australian Outback Spectacular.
Castles said they were appreciative of all the sponsors who had helped to ensure they could represent Wairarapa with pride, and all the businesses who had thrown their support behind the team.
There is no overall champion at the carnival, but one deserving group each year is presented with the coveted Spirit Award, decided on a vote of the schools, clubs, referees and organisers who participated.
There is also a Barbarian Award appointed to one player from each team.
Last year, Morrinsville College won the Senior Cup as the strongest team in the senior division.
The tournament runs from July 7-13, but there will also be free days for teams to visit theme parks or partake in other tourist activities.