Missing out on New South Wales selection has motivated 19/U San Remo Most Valuable Player, Kimberley Ravaillion, to become one of the country’s most promising underage netballers ahead of next year’s World Youth Netball Championships.
The 18-year old mid-courter claimed the individual honour at the 19/U National Netball Championships in Launceston, Tasmania just two years after missing out on selection for New South Wales’ 17/U Nationals team for a second consecutive year.
“Missing out on the 17’s was heart breaking but it gave me all the motivation and determination to make the 19s and do my best and it’s paid off,” Ravaillion said.
“A few thoughts went through my head about giving up but I was only 16 years old at the time so I thought that I’ve still got many more years to go ... a few people motivated me and that’s when it started, I made the New South Wales Institute of Sport.
“NSWIS helped me out a lot so I got better and better then was selected in the 19s team, Australian Institute of Sport and Australian teams.
“It was so exciting because I had been waiting two years in a row to make New South Wales; I was waiting in front of the computer for the 19s team to be announced and I kept refreshing the page then saw see my name on the list, I thought yes!”
While Ravaillion and her NSW team mates lost to Victoria 27-19 in the Grand Final, the six-day tournament was considered a personal success for the Australian 19/U player who impressed national selectors enough to be named the San Remo MVP.
“I was focused on our NSW team at Nationals and trying to help our team mates get a good result but I did have the World Youth Championships in my head and trying to play as best as I could, which I did,” Ravaillion said.
“I just froze for a moment because I didn’t really know what to do but then when I realised it was my name called out I couldn’t really believe it, it took me about two hours to process the feeling,”
“I didn’t really think about it but then in the third game I decided that I really wanted to try for it. I didn’t actually think it would happen but then at the end of the tournament I was announced and ... wow!”
Ravaillion’s meteoric rise in netball last year saw her selected in the Australian 19/U team, which played against Samoa’s national team ahead of the 2011 World Netball Championships, and offered an Australian Institute of Sport scholarship.
With her hard work finally paying off, don’t expect Ravaillion to rest on her laurels as she pursues Australian selection for next year’s World Youth Netball Championships in Glasgow, Scotland.
“That is my main goal at the moment; I’m really focused on trying to make that World Youth Netball Championship team with my training at the Australian Institute of Sport.”
In the 17/U National Netball Championships, New South Wales’ Kaitlyn Brice was named the tournament’s San Remo Most Valuable Player.
The individual honour capped off a remarkable tournament for the pint-sized shooter who helped her state to its first 17/U National title in five years and finished the tournament with the fifth most individual goals, 117 goals from 148 attempts at 79 per cent.
Bryce and Ravaillion will be names to follow over the next couple of years with both selected in Australian17/U and 19/U squads following the championships.
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