Good prospect of Pulse netting Wilkins
The Central Pulse appear a step closer to signing former Silver Ferns shooter Donna Wilkins after she told the Southern Steel she wasn't returning for next season.
Steel coach Janine Southby confirmed yesterday they had lost out in their battle to re-sign Wilkins.
She is expected to link up with close friend, and former Steel coach, Robyn Broughton at the Pulse for next season.
The Pulse continued their wall of silence on Wilkins last night, with a spokeswoman saying no-one had signed with the team yet.
The Pulse maintain they are working to accommodate the rules of the $380,000 salary cap under the new collective agreement before announcing any signings.
They and the other trans-Tasman franchises were given some breathing space last week when competition organisers delayed the required naming of the preliminary squads until November 5, a month later than originally scheduled.
The Southland Times reported the Steel franchise offered Wilkins a contract worth more than $100,000 to stay in the south next season.
Southby said they were gutted to lose the services of Wilkins, who shone for the Steel this season and was the third most accurate shooter in the trans-Tasman league with 314 goals from 348 attempts, a success rate of 90 per cent.
"Losing anyone of Donna's calibre is a big blow, but we're not dwelling on it," she said.
"We've got to look at building the franchise forward and that's what the focus is on.
"I know there was a lot of discussion and it wasn't an easy decision for Donna.
"I wish her well going forward. She was certainly a stalwart out there for us this year."
The Dominion Post