Sunshine Girl Sterling named Suncorp Super Netball Player of the Year; compatriots Wilson, Ward listed in Team of the Year

By Sports Desk November 25, 2023
(from left) Shamera Sterling, Jodi-Ann Ward and Latanya Wilson. (from left) Shamera Sterling, Jodi-Ann Ward and Latanya Wilson.

Sunshine Girls defender Shamera Sterling continued the legacy of Jamaicans being named Suncorp Super Netball Player of the year, as she copped this year’s top honours and again etched her name in the annals of the sport’s history.

After winning a maiden title with the Adelaide Thunderbirds and taking the club’s champion award, Sterling became just the second Jamaican player in the tournament’s history to win the coveted Player of the Year accolade, at Netball Australia’s Award ceremony on Saturday.

The ever-impressive goalkeeper joined ace shooter Jhaniele Fowler, who won the award for the last five years consecutively from 2018 to 2022, and in the process, ensured that it became six on the trot for Jamaican players.

Sterling, 27, has been pivotal to the Thunderbirds’ defensive end ever since she burst onto the scene in 2019, becoming an instant fan favorite.

In her fifth season in the league, the Sunshine Girl standout assisted the Thunderbirds to the club’s first premiership in a decade, when they defeated the NSW Swifts in an epic grand final where she recorded seven crucial gains, three intercepts and three rebounds.

For this year, sterling led the league with 118 deflections, a substantial 15 more than the second-highest ranked player, and she also topped the league with 46 interceptions, to underline her credentials as one of, if not, the world’s best.

Sterling was also named in the team of the year at goalkeeper, alongside compatriots Latanya Wilson, who parades her skills at wing-defence, as the two form a dynamic duo in the Adelaide Thunderbirds defence, while Jodi-Ann Ward, another defender, stood out for the Collingwood Magpies.

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    “The first two weeks were difficult for me, but I must say it has been quite fun. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, with a strong emphasis on family-oriented activities. I'm really loving the environment so far. Despite some initial struggles with my sleeping patterns, I'm gradually settling in. Overall, everything is going pretty well and I'm feeling quite content with my decision to join this club,” Beckford told SportsMax.TV.

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    Zone 8: Norwick Primary, Port Maria Primary, Lyssons Primary, Oracabessa Primary

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