Sunshine Coast Lightning is thrilled to announce the appointment of Belinda Reynolds as the Club’s new Head Coach.

The two-year deal sees Reynolds, a former Perth Orioles player and current West Coast Fever Assistant Coach, relocate to the Sunshine Coast to join Lightning ahead of the 2023 Suncorp Super Netball season.

Reynolds brings a wealth of experience coaching in high performance roles, notably as Assistant Coach at West Coast Fever for the last five years where the team achieved three grand finals appearances and one premiership, and also as Head Coach of the West Coast Fever Reserves that competed in the Australian National Championships this year.

An intensive recruitment process was conducted by a coach selection panel led by Lightning CEO Danielle Smith, that included Lightning and Melbourne Storm senior leadership staff, as well as specialist consultants including Dame Noeline Taurua.

Reynolds, who will relocate to the Sunshine Coast in the coming weeks, said she’s looking forward to joining a club that aligns with her personal values.

“I am grateful to be given the privilege to coach the Sunshine Coast Lightning and lead the team into the 2023 season,” Reynolds said.

“I am extremely excited to have the opportunity to work with the talented Lightning players and look forward to working alongside the wider performance team.

“Sunshine Coast Lightning is a proud and successful Club, who in partnership with the Storm Group, hold values that I feel inspired and connected to.

“My family and I are looking forward to moving to the wonderful Sunshine Coast and sharing the journey with the loyal and passionate Lightning members and fans.”

Reynolds was strongly endorsed by Lightning’s inaugural premiership-winning Head Coach, Dame Noeline Taurua.

“Belinda gave an excellent presentation that clearly demonstrated her strategic vision for Lightning and critical success factors based on performance, connection, and character. She demonstrated a sound knowledge on planning, coaching and training/game environments, and has vast hands-on experience at SSN level,” Taurua said.

“From my knowledge and experience at Lightning, I felt that she would be an ideal fit for the team, club and community.”

Lightning CEO Danielle Smith congratulated Belinda on her appointment and said her experience, strategic focus and people-first focus made her the perfect fit for the Club.

“Belinda brings excellent SSN experience as an Assistant Coach at the highly successful West Coast Fever, spending four years under Head Coach Stacey Marinkovich who has since become the Commonwealth Games gold medal-winning Head Coach of the Australian Diamonds,” Smith said.

“However most importantly, we feel that Belinda will be an excellent fit for our Club culture with her personable approach, focus on relationships and player wellbeing, and open communication style. She brings fantastic leadership qualities with a passionate and ambitious desire to succeed both on and off the court.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Belinda and her family to the Lightning family and look forward to helping them settle into their new home on the Sunshine Coast and engaging with the community.”

Belinda will initially work in a remote capacity before relocating to the Sunshine Coast in the coming weeks. Some of her first tasks will involve building connections within the Club, finalising the playing squad (including training partners and a temporary replacement player for the injured Reilley Batcheldor) and appointing her coaching support team. 

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