Sunshine Coast Lightning has wrapped up its Suncorp Regional Tours for 2023, delivering clinics to hundreds of netballers in regional communities across the state.

Lightning players and staff reached more than 550 participants over three weekends, travelling via car or plane to Mackay, Whitsundays, Maryborough, Barcaldine and Emerald.

Sunshine Coast Lightning players Tara Hinchliffe, Reilley Batcheldor, Laura Scherian and Mahalia Cassidy stand in front of a group of kids at Maryborough netball association. They are answering questions from the kids during a question and answer session.
Lightning players Tara Hinchliffe, Reilley Batcheldor, Laura Scherian and Mahalia Cassidy answer questions at Maryborough Netball Association.


Recent Netball World Cup gold medallist, Cara Koenen travelled to Barcaldine and Emerald for the last leg of the tour and said she enjoys the opportunity to get out into the regions.

“As the only regional team in the Suncorp Super Netball we’re very passionate about promoting netball out in our small communities. I’m a regional girl myself so I love being able to get out here. There’s so much talent out in the regions and all of these communities are based off sporting backgrounds and they just love getting out and running around — and we really enjoy it as well,” she said.

“Everyone has turned up with smiles on their faces and a keen attitude so that’s all we can ask for. We’ve loved coming out to Barcaldine and Emerald and we hope we can come back again soon.”

Lightning player Cara Koenen holds a netball up as if she is about to pass it. There is a young player next to her who is smiling.
Cara Koenen at Emerald Netball Association.

Brendan Jones, Suncorp Regional Manager – Central & North Queensland said: “The opportunity for some of our Regional Team Members to join the Sunshine Coast Lightning Players on their recent Suncorp Regional Tour was a wonderful way to support the community, and increase awareness, interest and participation in netball.”

“Our Suncorp Team Girls initiative supports netball from grassroots to professional and aims to raise awareness of women’s sport and the life-long benefits of participation and keeping teens playing longer.”

Lightning players Ash Ervin and Tara Hinchliffe sit behind a table while young girls stand in front. The players are signing yellow tennis balls for the girls.
Ash Ervin and Tara Hinchliffe sign merchandise in Mackay.

More Articles