Four teams hope twinning formula pays off

Seeing double on the court? Don't be fooled

LOUISE BERWICK
Last updated 05:00 02/09/2014
Netball twins
JOHN HAWKINS/ Fairfax NZ

PARADOX: Twins Rachel and Sarah Marshall, 16, Georgia and Rose Rhind, 15, Sophie and Abby Erwood, 17, and, in front, Kate and Georgia Heffernan, 14, are all taking to the court this week at the South Island secondary schools netball tournament.

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If you are seeing double on the netball court, don't be fooled.

Four southern netball teams have chosen identical twins to be on their side, creating quite the conundrum for their opposition.

Rachel and Sarah Marshall, 16, Georgia and Rose Rhind, 15, Sophie and Abby Erwood, 17, and Kate and Georgia Heffernan, 14, are all taking to the court this week at the South Island secondary schools' netball tournament.

The sisters all agreed having a double on the court came in handy but it had its downfalls too.

Sophie, who plays for South Otago High School, said often her parents would cheer on their daughters but not know which one was which.

"They yell out up the court ‘go Abby' and I am, like, ‘that was actually me'."

But it wasn't just the parents getting muddled up as the sisters shone on the court; referees and the opposing teams also had difficulties.

The twins all agreed it often took until the third quarter of the game for their opponents to realise there were two of them on the court and not one.

South Island secondary schools netball tournament media manager Kate Buchanan said the event had attracted 76 teams and hundreds of spectators but it was unusual to have so many sets of identical twins.

"Usually we have sisters but to have four sets of identical twins is quite unique."

The girls did not think it would advantage their teams too much having twins, though the Rhind girls, of Menzies College, said they could sometimes anticipate what each other was thinking.

However, the twins could be their schools' lucky charms, with all four teams the girls played for winning their first games yesterday.

The netball tournament runs until Thursday and, with Southland Girls' High School a hot favourite, Buchanan said it would be great for the community to head to ILT Stadium Southland to support the future Ferns.

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- The Southland Times

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