Athletes swapping codes have created numerous headlines and talking points in recent times, with AFL converts Karmichael Hunt and Israel Folau joining new franchises Gold Coast Suns and Greater Western Sydney Giants from rugby league.
One switch which has gone relatively unnoticed, minus the fanfare and commotion, is the move of former Australian international underage basketballer Gretel Tippett to netball.
Previously an Australian Institute of Sport basketball scholarship holder, Tippett “fell in love with (netball)” when she tried the sport with a friend’s team after an extended layoff from basketball through illness earlier this year.
“I got glandular fever before the WNBL season started and I tried to struggle through training but it just wasn’t working and I was getting even more run down so I decided to take a break and relax,” Tippett recalls.
“A few of my friends play netball so after I had a few months off, I joined her netball team, had a run around and loved it.
“I got a call from a Holden Cruz Cup teams in Queensland asking me if I would like to come along for training to see what it’s all about so I went along and fell in love with it.”
A former Australian 19/U international basketballer and WNBL player, the Gold Coast native is set to make her Nationals debut when she lines up for Queensland at the 21/U National Netball Championships commencing on Thursday.
“I’m so excited, I can’t wait to get to Perth,” Tippett said of the Nationals.
“We’ve got a great team, the girls are a lot of fun, the coach Jen (Brazel) is amazing so it should be good.”
“Hopefully we can win the Nationals: I know I’ll learn even more about the game and use the experience to improve my game and see how we go against the rest of Australia.”
“It’s obviously going to be foreign to walk onto a court with a dress on instead of the baggy shirt and shorts.”
Gretel, the sister AFL footballers Kurt Tippett (Adelaide Crows) and Joel Tippett (formerly Goal Coast Suns), has decided to pursue a career in netball during her time with the Golden South Jaguars (Holden Cruz Cup).
When asked how she’d face a choice between playing for the Australian Diamonds or Australian Opals, Tippett was pretty quick with her response.
“I would love to play for the Diamonds,” the 188cm shooter said.
“I’ve got a lot of improvement and a lot more experience to gain but that is definitely a goal in the future if I can keep improving.”
The 2012 21/U National Netball Championships commence on Thursday July 12 and conclude on Sunday July 15 at Venues West Challenge Stadium in Perth.
Other Leading News