Australia will have a new leader at the helm in Birmingham following the appointment of Stacey Marinkovich as head coach of the Diamonds.
Marinkovich takes the role from Lisa Alexander who led the Diamonds from 2011, a period which included a gold medal win in Glasgow and silver medal on the Gold Coast in 2018.
Currently coach of the West Coast Fever in Super League competition, Marinkovich has tasted international competition as Specialist Centre Court Coach of the Commonwealth Games Australia funded Australian Development Squad. Marinkovich has also been Australian Fast5 Head Coach.
Awarded the Joyce Brown Coach of the Year in 2018, Marinkovich has had a long involvement with the Netball Australia pathway as an elite player within state representative teams and for the Perth Orioles and West Coast Fever until her playing retirement in 2009.
The 39-year-old will continue to coach the West Coast Fever until the end of the 2021 Super Netball season before stepping full-time into head coach duties ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and 2023 Netball World Cup in South Africa.
Given the current COVID-19 restrictions, there is no locked in schedule for the Diamonds, so Marinkovich’s first game in charge may not be until 2021. Netball Australia and Netball New Zealand are however continuing discussions on the annual four-match Constellation Cup test series this year, pending travel allowances across the Tasman.
We're thrilled to announce that Stacey Marinkovich, the current Head Coach of the West Coast Fever, will be the 15th Origin Australian Diamonds Head Coach! Welcome to the team Stacey 👏
Read more: https://t.co/Qkp8DQZuFS pic.twitter.com/s3aQHzqYA0
— Netball Australia (@NetballAust) August 29, 2020
Marinkovich spoke of the pride she feels to be appointed the next leader of the Diamonds.
“This is something I have been working towards my entire professional life and I’m absolutely honoured and humbled that Netball Australia have granted me the opportunity to lead the world’s best netball team,” Marinkovich Netball Australia in the announcement statement.
“I am acutely aware of the expectations, the history and responsibility of taking on such a position and I am very much looking forward to growing the success of the Origin Diamonds program.
“My coaching philosophy has always been to evolve my athletes by embedding a collaborative purpose and generating principles and standards that enable players, support staff, stakeholders and the wider netball community to thrive and advance towards sustained success.”
Marinkovich represented Australia at U21 level as well as playing national league for the Queensland Firebirds, Perth Orioles and West Coast Fever.
🥇"She needs to bring home the Gold."🥇
Liz has high expectations for new Diamonds coach Stacey Marinkovich.
— 9Netball (@9Netball) August 30, 2020
“The KPIs from the public, from netball fans and ex-players like me are going to be that she has to come up with the gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2022 and then the gold medal at the World Cup the following year,” Ellis told Channel Nine on Sunday.
“That will be difficult. The netball world has changed in the last few years. We always expected the Diamonds to come out and win everything, but Super Netball has changed the face of international netball and we’ve seen teams like England, Jamaica, South Africa and Malawi come to the fore. Uganda is on its way up too.
“But at the end of the day, the expectation is that the Diamonds are to win gold. That is what Stacey Marinkovich’s KPIs will be and that’s what she will set out to do.”
Three-time Commonwealth Games representative Catherine Cox called on the nation to rally around the new coach.
“It was a surprise but I think she can do a really good job,” Cox told Nine.
“She has the respect of a lot of the players and now we need to jump on board and support her.”
Just the 15th person to lead one of Australia’s favourite and most revered sporting outfits Marinkovich will be just the fourth coach to take the helm at the Commonwealth Games, taking the baton from Alexander who followed Norma Plummer (silver in Melbourne and Delhi) and Jill McIntosh (gold in Kuala Lumpur and Manchester).
Netball at the Commonwealth Games Fact Box
|1998: Kuala Lumpur||Jill McIntosh||Vicki Wilson||Gold (def. NZL 42-39)|
|2002: Manchester||Jill McIntosh||Kathryn Harby-Williams||Gold (def. NZL 57-55 in Overtime)|
|2006: Melbourne||Norma Plummer||Sharelle McMahon||Silver (lost to NZL 55-59)|
|2010: Delhi||Norma Plummer||Sharelle McMahon||Silver (lost to NZL 64-66 in Overtime)|
|2014: Glasgow||Lisa Alexander||Laura Geitz||Gold (def. NZL 58-40)|
|2018: Gold Coast||Lisa Alexander||Caitlin Bassett||Silver (lost to ENG 51-52)|