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Anthony • 15 mins
By Bridget Hicks (PSG Staff)
Former Australian netballer Jo Morgan has been charged with leading the Queensland state 15 years and under girls in the 2017 Pacific School Games netball championships, which began in Adelaide today.
The sharp shooter is no stranger to the elite level, captaining the Sydney Sandpipers in the Commonwealth Bank Trophy and also spending time with the Queensland Firebirds in the Australian competition and the Western Flyers in the New Zealand national championship.
Morgan has turned a full circle, returning this week to the state where she first tasted international success when she debuted for Australia against arch rival New Zealand in 1996.
The high school teacher credits her own playing opportunities for the decision to return to underage sport in a coaching capacity and share her wisdom with tomorrow’s stars.
“I think you’ve got to remember where you came from, because that used to be me,” Morgan said.
“I looked up to players and wanted them to give back to the sport. I’ve been coached by some amazing coaches and been given so much knowledge that it’s wasted if it’s just sitting it in my head.
“I’m just trying to pass it on and it makes my job easy that I’ve got such an amazing bunch to work with.”
Speaking of the lessons her young players can learn from this week’s championship, Morgan said that they are being challenged to be professional in everything they do and find consistency in their performances.
“It means that when you come into the stadium, you’re about the team and switched on, ready to go,’ Morgan said.
“It’s about being consistent. At the elite level, a team that wins a championship is a team that is consistent every game.”
And what does she expect her team to achieve this week?
“Anything is possible. This is the breeding ground for superstars and if they want to be a Firebird or if they want to be in the Sunshine Coast Lightning, this is where it all begins.
“Hopefully they just learn and grow throughout the week. It’s rewarding to see these girls on the pathway to achieving their goals,” Morgan said.
The Queensland 15 years and under girls went down to her native New South Wales in their opening match of the championship on Sunday afternoon. Their next match is on Monday, 4 December against the Northern Territory.