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Capital Darters Coaching Structure Finalised

The inaugural Capital Darters coaching team has been announced ahead of the 2020 Deakin University Australian Netball League (DUANL) competition.

Former South African international Bronwyn Bock-Jonathan has been named Head Coach of the side, with Jessica Whitfort assuming Assistant Coaching duties.

Sunshine Coast Lightning Assistant Coach Christine Voge, who has been integral in the formulation of the Club’s partnership with Netball ACT, said the Darters would benefit from the two high calibre coaching appointments.

“Today’s announcement of the new coaching team is wonderful, as we welcome Bronwyn and Jess to the Capital Darters ANL team for 2020,” Voge said.

“Both coaches will bring a professional and dedicated approach to the team, and collectively bring with them a strong history of successfully coaching experienced and emerging netball athletes.

“Bronwyn will return to coaching at ANL level for ACT, while Jess will step into the Assistant Coach position, after her previous experience with the Fury ANL team in Victoria.

“I am very much looking forward to working with both coaches and helping to develop a program that will see success on court for the Darters’ team, create individual opportunities and foster integration between the Canberra Darters and Sunshine Coast Lightning programs.”

[L-R: Bronwyn Bock-Jonathan and Jessica Whitfort]

Bock-Jonathan forged a successful playing career overseas before settling in Canberra, successfully taking on a number of elite coaching roles in Australia’s capital.

In a full circle moment, she was also the inaugural coach of the predecessor Canberra Darters side when they first formed in 2008.

“I am very excited about coaching the Capital Darters. The rebranding provides Netball ACT (NACT) athletes, coaches and officials with access to a high-performance pathway,” Bock Jonathan said.

“I’m looking forward to working with the athletes and coaching staff and creating a performance environment that embraces a culture of personal growth, respect and a vivacious spirit!

“The blend of coaching approaches and personable styles of Chris, Jess and myself will provide the athletes with different ways to achieve their performance goals and unite as the inaugural Capital Darters.”

Whitfort, who most recently held the position of Apprentice Coach for the 2019 Premiership-winning Victorian Fury side, said she was excited to join the newest ANL franchise.

“I’m thrilled to be involved in the inaugural partnership between Lightning and Netball ACT, to showcase and develop the enormous talent coming through both of these regions,” Whitford said.

“I am excited for the challenges and rewards that coaching a multi-state team provides and am looking forward to meeting and working with all the athletes and coaches this weekend in Canberra.”

The six Capital Darters players based on the Sunshine Coast will travel to Canberra alongside Voge this weekend for the first of two netball camps, as the ANL side looks towards the 2020 DUANL season.

The Coast-based Darters include Lightning Training Partners Ashlee Unie, Binnian Hunt, Annie Lawrie and Sienna Allen, as well as former Training Partners Chanel Dyer and Sarahpheinna Woulf.

Lightning and Netball ACT announced the new Capital Darters team as a collaboration between the two organisations, to ensure emerging athletes in both pathways could compete in the premier DUANL competition in 2020.