Leitchville-Gunbower coach ready to overcome COVID-19 challenges

By Brayden May

BEING a first-year coach at a new club is difficult enough.

That’s without the interruption of a global pandemic.

Recently re-appointed Leitchville-Gunbower A-grade coach Ash Bradley learnt the hard way in 2020 after her grand plans were bought to a grinding halt.

The Bombers felt like they were building after a disappointing 2019 but COVID-19 stopped any plans they had in place.

It left Bradley feeling like she had put in the hard yards for nothing.

“At first it felt like pre-season was a little bit of a waste of time,” she said.

“But on reflection having the pre-season will be really beneficial for us moving forward. The girls know what I expect from them, so it is going to help us move forward in 2021.

“We had started to develop a really good culture and I’m looking forward to getting back into it.”

While the team isn’t able to train together due to the coronavirus restrictions, Bradley said the team had been doing everything they could to stay in touch.

“I’ve posted a few online training sessions, that way the girls are still doing something,” she said.

“It is hard not being able to train as a team – not just the skills of the game but also the social side of it.

“At the first training session back, I think there will be a lot more talking than actual training.

“There might be a point where some people don’t care about doing the beep test.”

Heading into the 2021 season, Bradley said she was hopeful of exposing the Bombers’ younger players to senior netball.

“Junior development is going to be one of my biggest areas of focus,” she said.

“We’ve got a lot of talented juniors at the club and I’m excited to see what they can add.

“A bit of youthful enthusiasm can really help us improve as a team.”

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