3 Jun 2014

Sport: Samoa netball injected with some experience

12:08 pm on 3 June 2014

The Samoa netball coach Marcia Hardcastle is looking forward to the return of some experienced players when her side attempts to qualifying for next year's World Cup in Sydney this week.

The 2014 Pacific Netball Series in Rarotonga gets underway this afternoon with Fiji taking on the Cook Islands and Papua New Guinea up against Samoa.

Each team will play six games across six days with the top two qualifying for next year's World Cup.

Hardcastle admits her team has had a less than ideal build-up with no warm-up games and very little time together as a full team.

But she still backs her players to qualify for netball's pinnacle event and says the return of some familiar faces will help.

"Monica [Fuimaono] is one of them and Opheira Karatau is another one and Ruta [Schwalger]. We've had a couple of girls through pregnancy have not been available. We've got five from last year and the rest are all couple of young girls come back in and one that's probably first time playing for Samoa but apart from that we've got players that have previously played 21s or for the national team".

The Samoa netball coach Marcia Hardcastle.