Limited court time for Jamaican defender Kasey Evering at the Commonwealth Games has not set off alarm bells in the Tactix camp but management are keen to get their hands on their recruited import.
Evering turned in a mixed performance in Delhi and was regularly substituted for Nicole Aiken in the defensive circle – the Sunshine Girls losing to England in the bronze-medal match last week.
It was her first major netball tournament for her country since the 2007 world championships in Auckland when she was a standout for Jamaica who finished third.
Injury and a falling out with her national netball body saw Evering walk away from the game and the 1.85m defender returned only this year in their home series against England in September.
Her time off court showed in Delhi and Tactix coach Helen Mahon-Stroud will be hoping it is only "rustiness" which prevented the defender from performing and not being hampered from a knee injury which required surgery on two occasions last year.
She and assistant coach Julie Seymour will sit down with Evering in December when she arrives in Christchurch.
Mahon-Stroud said she did not see as much of Evering as she would have liked but felt the defender was still finding her feet after a lengthy break from the game.
"I think she certainly showed that she can read the game very well but she looked like she'd been out of the game for a bit," she said.
"We all know that coming back into netball at ANZ Championship level is incredibly different to what internationals were five years ago or NPC. There's just no comparison at all.
"When she's in our environment she'll get that intensity in training day-in and day-out in the buildup to the ANZ [Championship]."
Evering arrives in Christchurch in early December, for two weeks, and will be back for a longer stay in the new year to prepare for the trans-Tasman competition.
The Tactix squad comes together early next month but will be without Maree Bowden, Anna Thompson, Charlotte Kight and Ellen Halpenny for a short time as they head to England on November 14 for the World Netball Series.
Mahon-Stroud said their inclusion in the national side for the FastNet competition was a bonus for the franchise and would do little in disrupting their buildup to next year's trans-Tasman event.
"We had planned for it," she said.
"And it's great that those girls get the opportunity to go and experience FastNet and represent New Zealand."
The Tactix, who finished bottom of the table last season, open their championship campaign against the West Coast Fever in Christchurch on February 21.
- The Press