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Overseas-based player hits out - Netballer slams non-selection for Sunshine Girls squad

Published:Saturday | February 17, 2018 | 12:00 AMRobert Bailey
Vanessa Walker

Another national netballer has come out swinging after she was not named in the squad for the upcoming Quad Series and the Commonwealth Games.

"I think the selectors don't like me, and once they don't like you, it doesn't matter how well you are performing, they are not going to select you," Vanessa Walker told The Sunday Gleaner in a telephone interview from the United Kingdom.

Walker, who turns 28 on Monday, told The Sunday Gleaner that she was baffled by her non-selection to the Sunshine Girls squad because she has been playing well for her club over the past year.

The Sunshine Girl, who is currently playing professionally in the United Kingdom, where she represents the Scottish Sirens in the UK Super League, says that she has been working to maintain her game at a high level.

"I have been working hard, and it is obviously showing on the court because my team was at the top of the league last year and we lost in the final by three goals. I have been getting player of the match awards, and so I have been performing well, and so I know it is not because of my performance why I wasn't selected," she said.

Shanice Beckford and Rebekah Robinson are the goal attacks that have been selected ahead of Walker on the Sunshine Girls squad.

Walker, who last represented the Sunshine Girls at the 2016 Fast5 World Series, added that despite her omission from the squad, she still plans to represent the country in the future if she is selected.




"I have never given up on any challenge that I have in life. The thing is, netball is my passion, and I will do any and everything to be successful, and I have been doing that, and I will continue to train hard and do my best and will make myself available. If I am not selected, then there is nothing that I can do about that," said Walker, a former student of the Mico University College.

"It cannot affect my career because I am here still playing, and if I feel like not playing netball anymore, it is up to me. I have a clear conscience and I am happy with where I am. Selection on the national team would be a plus, but I will still be playing netball, and I will be having fun either way," she said.

Former captain Nicole Aiken-Pinnock, Walker's teammate at the Scottish Sirens, also told The Sunday Gleaner in an interview last week that she was very surprised by her omission from the team.

The Quad Series includes hosts New Zealand, Malawi, and Fiji and will be held in Auckland, New Zealand, from March 21-24, which is two weeks before the start of the Commonwealth Games, which will be held in Gold Coast, Australia, from April 4-15.