Magic confirm assistant coach appointment

Last updated 15:27 17/07/2013

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Margaret Forsyth has been named assistant coach of the Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic.

The former Silver Fern will work alongside new head coach Julie Fitzgerald in next year's ANZ Championship after the resignation of longtime coach Noeline Taurua.

Forsyth's activities outside netball extend to a career in the police. She is a Hamilton City councillor.

Her sporting career also covered national level basketball and athletics and she brings those experiences and networks with her.

Fitzgerald said she was delighted to have Forsyth's mana, experience and local knowledge involved in the coaching setup both at the Magic and its netball zone.

"I am looking forward to working with Margaret in building a formidable squad as well as continuing to develop netball coaches and players within the Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Gisborne areas," Fitzgerald said.

Netball Waikato-Bay of Plenty zone chairman John Wiltshire said it is important that the future of the netball zone had been paramount when considering the appointment of people to key roles.

Forsyth is a former Netball Waikato-Bay of Plenty zone board member who, after Taurua's sudden resignation, decided to further her coaching career and formally resigned from the board on June 16, eight days before the coach interviews.

To form this coaching team that Fitzgerald will lead, Netball New Zealand (NNZ) has rules for a non-New Zealander to be acceptable to them so the zone had to outline a structure and a process whereby a New Zealand coach needed to be part of the coaching team.

The "plan" was presented to NNZ on Wednesday, June 26, and accepted on Monday, July 1.

The zone board also has plans to have a broader group of New Zealand coaches in the zone who will be educated by Fitzgerald and Forsyth in and around the Magic season to become involved in coaching the zone's age-group teams and in the centres where partnerships can be agreed.

Forsyth's appointment was not announced at the same time as Fitzgerald's, ensuring the value of Fitzgerald to the Magic team and the zone could be fully appreciated and to give time for the pair to meet.

"We are continuing to build a team of people with high standards, considerable experience, netball knowledge and an understanding of the local issues with a focus on doing the best we can at Kia Magic level [within salary caps and related parameters] as well as developing more quality coaches in our zone," Netball Waikato-Bay of Plenty chief executive Tim Hamilton said.

"Margaret is an iconic figure in netball, a lady with values and principles that fit the zone's purpose values and principles framework perfectly. We are delighted to have Margaret involved."

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- Fairfax Media

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