Sport

Bradley re-appointed Leitchville-Gunbower coach

By Brayden May

THE disappointment of a cancelled season will be the driving force behind Leitchville-Gunbower’s 2021 Heathcote District League netball season under recently re-appointed coach Ash Bradley.

On Wednesday, the Bombers confirmed the former Shepparton Bears star had agreed to take charge of the club’s A grade team again after missing out on the opportunity in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Leitchville-Gunbower netball president Mandy Hutchinson said the club was pleased to see Bradley stick around for another year.

“It’s very exciting because Ash had shown a lot of promise as a coach before the season was called off earlier in the year,” Hutchinson said.

“I thought the team was building a lot of momentum during pre-season, so it was disappointing we didn’t get to see the girls out on the court.

“But they’re already looking forward to making up for lost time when they can come back together as a team again.”

Bradley’s netball experience speaks for itself, having represented several sides in the Victorian Netball League including the Casey Demons where she was named captain in 2019.

She has also previously coached AFL Goulburn Murray’s netball academy teams.

Hutchinson said she had been impressed with the way Bradley structured her training sessions.

“Ash has a deep knowledge of the game which she shares with the players because all of the sessions are different,” she said.

“You could tell the players were enjoying themselves and I think the idea of fun will be key when we do get back to training.

“She has all the values we want someone to bring to the role at Leitchville-Gunbower including being welcoming, inclusive and most importantly someone who loves the sport.”

Hutchinson said Bradley’s determination to improve junior players was equally as impressive.

“Ash wasn’t just taking senior sessions, she was also spending time with our youngest players,” she said.

“As a kid you would always enjoy seeing the seniors come to training because that’s where you want to be.

“We want kids to come back to our club next season and I think Ash attending those training sessions earlier in the year will go a long way to helping that.”

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