A Last Minute Location Change Reaps Rewards
The 2015 Smarter than Smoking West Kimberley Primary Schools Netball Carnival was changed for this year, possibly for the better. A last minute booking clash was going to see cancellation of an event that had been previously trialed and was not getting the recognition it deserved until a creative plan allowed it to go ahead. Traditionally across the Kimberley region netball is played on wooden floorboards or hard cemented courts, but in order to keep the event going an idea was pitched to the 2015 Coordinator, Jacinta Brooker, to hold the event on a grassed surface at Derby District High School Oval. All schools approved of the venue change and the 2015 Smarter than Smoking West Kimberley Primary School Netball Competition was held on grass.
After the carnival, competition organisers received positive feedback from the school teachers and carnival support staff who travelled to Derby to participate. They mentioned that the atmosphere was electric, having six games of netball going on at once was awesome, there were no injuries due to the soft nature of grass and there was a huge space for spectators, parents and players to move about freely.
Jane Edwards, a long-time advocate of Netball throughout the North West Region of Western Australia said, “The carnival was a hit! The kids were playing hard but were injury free. The more courts means earlier start and finish times. Plus with the amount of students playing netball these days we need to cater for large numbers!”
When asked what Jane thought about playing on grass she went on to say, “Derby Netball Association have always looked for better player experiences and this is one of them. I remember going over to the Gold Coast with the Derby Netball Team and playing in the Mixed Netball Beach Festival. That was a great eye opener as we played five-a-side, on the beach, barefooted and injury free! Also a lot of old Netball players I spoke to agree on the grassed surface being a great idea!”
The carnival was set up with A and B grade divisions and each received awards from the West Coast Fever Netball Team. Congratulations goes to Broome Primary School who were the A-Grade winners and Looma Remote Community School who were the B-Grade winners and crowned with the West Coast Fever Cup for 2015.
The Smarter than Smoking West Kimberley Primary Schools Football Carnival was held on the same day. Derby’s Nicholson Square Town Oval was split into four modified ovals and the competition began to see who would be crowned the 2015 Premiers. The day started with the schools needing to get used to the change in the oval, the Derby heat and the easterly breeze that blew hard for the first half of the day. The teams came out and were playing hard which demonstrated that school bragging rights were at stake. At the end of the day Roebuck Primary School fought off all comers and was crowned the 2015 Premiers. The team received a shield from the Fremantle Dockers and bragging rights for the year!!
This event was proudly supported by Healthway, Derby District High School, Shire of Derby West Kimberley, Derby Clontarf Foundation, Derby Girls Academy, Derby Tigers Football Club and the Derby Netball Association.