Three young netballers from the Great Lakes have been selected for the Hunter Academy of Sport's 2020 netball program.
Forster's Madison Paine was selected for the 14s development squad, while Hawks Nest's Tahlia Henry and Forster's Evie Whitton were selected for the 15-16s squad.
The girls joined their fellow squad members at the academy's orientation day at Hunter Valley Grammar School on Saturday, February 8.
They were introduced to the coaching staff and presented with their uniforms by Suncorp Super Netball league representative and former academy member, Sam Poolman.
The program will give the girls the opportunity to receive world-class training and tutelage in a regional setting.
It also plays an integral role in the Netball NSW Athlete Pathway by identifying, monitoring and developing the skills of young netballers.
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The program will consist of on court skills training, fitness and athlete education, as per the Netball Australia Develop a Diamond program.
The girls will also learn some valuable off court skills, thanks to the program's major sponsor, Greater Bank.
"Our partnership provides more than funding to help offset the program costs for the athletes," Greater Bank's head of marketing and customer experience, Matt Hingston, said.
"This year we will also be conducting financial literacy education sessions in association with the University of Newcastle, which will assist in their personal development both on and off the court."
The three girls will train with the squad on a weekly basis.
They will represent the academy at the 2020 Your Local Club Academy Games at Maitland in April, before travelling to Orange later in the year for the Greater Bank Academy Challenge, where they'll compete against 10 other regional academies of sport from across NSW.
Madison and Evie will also represent Great Lakes Netball Association at the State titles in June, while Tahlia will represent Charlestown Association.
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