Magpies Netball has completed its coaching team for season 2019, appointing Nicole Richardson as assistant coach.
Richardson will stand alongside head coach, Rob Wright, and her co-assistant coach, Kate Upton, where she will work closely with the team’s defensive line-up.
“It’s truly a privilege to be at a club with such rich history and I’m looking forward to the many opportunities here moving forward,” Richardson said.
“I’ve loved every minute at the club so far and have really enjoyed the environment particularly as our on court sessions have got underway.”
Richardson arrives at the club with a wealth of experience, having coached the City West Falcons in Victoria’s Netball League and most recently fulfilling a specialist coaching position with the West Coast Fever.
Before leading from the sidelines, Richardson spent seven seasons with the Melbourne Kestrels where she captained the team from 2000 until her retirement at the end of 2003.
Richardson capped a total of 32 games for Australia and claimed gold at the 2002 Commonwealth Games. As a dual-international athlete, she also represented the country in softball, winning bronze at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
“Having that past athlete background, I really understand the players and how they are feeling both on and off the court, so I’m hoping I can provide assistance in that respect,” Richardson said.
Her key focus heading into the 2019 season is to work closely with the coaching panel and players to ensure the right measures are in place come game day.
“Through the implementation of some different match strategies, we hopefully will empower the girls so that they can change their structures accordingly and adapt to what’s happening out there on court.
“I’m really excited to see what the team will achieve in 2019 and look forward to working with Rob and Kate to ensure that we get the success on court that the girls deserve,” Richardson said.
With Magpies Netball operating under the same roof as Collingwood’s AFL team, Richardson has happily shed her former allegiance to Richmond, although as the cousin of Tigers legend Matthew Richardson, she admits it was a difficult conversation to have with her family when she got the job.
“Well I’m older, so I guess I’m the original Richo,” she said with a laugh.