Magpies Netball has completed its 2018 roster after signing training partner Matilda Garrett to a senior playing contract.
One of Australia’s brightest young netball talents – Matilda Garrett – will be elevated to the Magpies’ playing roster after being rewarded with a senior contract for next season.
The 18-year-old signed with Collingwood as a training partner in 2017, before enjoying a breakout season with the Tasmanian Magpies in the Australian Netball League (ANL).
Hailing from Narre Warren South, the talented defender said signing with the Magpies was a ‘dream come true’.
“When I got the contract, Kristy called me and I started tearing up,” Garrett told Magpies Netball this week.
“I asked her if she was serious…I just couldn’t believe it.
“It’s a dream come true. I did not think I’d be playing Super Netball next year and I can’t believe I’ll be playing for the club I want to be representing. It’s just awesome.”
Magpies Netball Head Coach Kristy Keppich-Birrell credited Garrett’s professionalism as a training partner this season.
“Matilda’s work ethic and humble approach to her achievements makes her a wonderful addition to our team,” Keppich-Birrell said.
“We can’t wait to see her take her game to the next level in 2018 and beyond.”
Since graduating from Rowville Secondary College’s Sport Academy last year, Garrett has journeyed through the netball ranks to reach her first professional playing contract.
“The other morning, I was going through my cupboard and cleaning it out, and I found so many different (netball) dresses that I’ve kept over the journey.”
“You forget how much work you’ve actually put in to get to this level, and it’s great to see some results…it’s unbelievable. I’m so happy.”
Amongst Garrett’s impressive achievements are two national championship titles with Victoria’s 19/U side, a Best and Fairest Award with the Tasmanian Magpies and a scholarship with the Victorian Institute of Sport.
General Manager of Magpies Netball Jennifer McIntyre said Garrett will be an exciting addition to the roster next season.
“Matilda is a quality person on and off the netball court and we were excited to offer her with a playing contract after an incredible 2017 season.”
“Her willingness to learn and to work on her game has been most impressive.
“We think Matilda will have a very bright future at Collingwood.”
Having already spent a season learning under fellow Magpies defenders Sharni Layton and April Brandley, Garrett said she is looking forward to building relationships with her teammates.
“They’re so loud out on court and it’s great to have a voice behind you and know you’re in a partnership with your other defenders,” Garrett said.
“I’m so keen to get a go on the court. I know all the girls will have my back when I’m out there.”
But before she can reacquaint herself with the Holden Centre, Garrett will travel to Botswana with fellow Magpie Alice Teague-Neeld to represent Australia at the World Youth Cup.
“I’m excited to be representing Australia. It will be the biggest tournament of my career.”
Garrett’s signing – along with new recruit Erin Bell and the eight returning players – completes the Magpies’ 2018 squad.
McIntyre thanked Micaela Wilson and Cody Lange for their contributions to the Magpies in 2017.
“Micaela and Cody have been outstanding foundations members of our inaugural team.”
“We wish them all the best for their future on and off the court, and they will forever be a part of the Collingwood family.”
MAGPIES NETBALL 2018 SQUAD
PHOTOS: GETTY IMAGES