Raymond Graham, Gleaner Writer
LOCAL netball fans are in for a lot of excitement over the next several weeks as it will be close going in the Intercol Senior netball competition, as most of the Sunshine Girls will be in action for some of the leading colleges and universities.
Defending champions Mico University College, University of West Indies (UWI), University of Technology (UTech) and G.C. Foster College - all former champions - are expected to lead the way.
League competition will start today, following last Saturday's Open Rally at Wolmer's Girls where Mico University were hosts of Intercol sporting activities for the 2012-13 season. In the Open Rally competition on Saturday, the Conrad Parkes-coached UWI A, which won the Open Senior title a year ago, repeated by capturing the rally after posting an impressive 6-1 win over G.C. Foster College in the final.
Leading up to that match they also had an easy 3-1 win over defending senior champions Mico A.
UWI, with senior national players Nadine Bryan and Malysha Kelly, have strengthened with three other senior Sunshine Girls - Danielle Johnson, Kadian Hemmings and former Mico player, Vanessa Williams.
The Annette Daley-coached Mico retained most of last year's players with Sunshine Girls Kimone Tulloch, Patricia McCalla and Vangalee Williams, as well as last year's Inter-collegiate finals MVP, Kereisa Kessna.
After underperforming for the past several years, despite a plethora of talent, the C. Lloyd Walker-coached G.C. Foster College will be depending on national senior players Shantal Slater and Sashagaye Lynch, along with Under-21 player Denean Taylor, to go all the way this time.
UTech will be hoping that former national player Althea Byfield and Jamalco player Nardia Brown can give their team a big boost.
Even though the competition starts today, none of the big three will be in action until two days later. Mico will be away to Shortwood Teacher's College, early favourites UWI A will host UCC and G.C. Foster College entertain Edna Manley. UTech will be at home to Knox Community College. Action in all matches gets under way at 4 p.m.