T&T senior women's team netballer Samantha Wallace and reigning Australia Suncorp Super Netball League champions New South Wales Swifts will make the two-hour flight from Sydney to Queensland later this week ahead of the start of the season on August 1.
This as, all non-Queensland teams are required to relocate to Queensland for part or all of the season, which will still be made up of 14 rounds and a normal finals series.
This year's season has received an enormous boost with the Queensland Government throwing its support behind the competition. The commitment will see the majority of matches, including the entire finals series, played across Nissan Arena in Brisbane, the University of the Sunshine Coast Stadium and regional Queensland.
To ensure the wellbeing of athletes, support staff and umpires, this season will be played in a condensed format.
And in further exciting news for fans, several home games will also be scheduled for non-Queensland clubs based on border restrictions and the latest health advice due to the coronavirus.
The first phase of the fixture is set to be announced within the next five days. This announcement comes as the league’s two Victorian teams, the Melbourne Vixens and Collingwood Magpies, departed for Queensland for a two-week quarantine period on Saturday.
Suncorp Super Netball CEO Chris Symington said it’s exciting to have the backing of the Queensland Government.
“This support from the Queensland Government will ensure we’re able to deliver a full 60-match season of the world’s best netball to fans all over Australia and the world, so we thank them immensely for their support and for accommodating the entire league,” he said.
“With less than two weeks until the first centre pass of the season, the excitement across the league and within our fan base is palpable and we’re looking forward to getting the 2020 season underway.
“We’re also thrilled that loyal fans across the country will be rewarded with home games and the chance to see their teams live at their local stadium. These games will, however, be subject to the latest border restrictions and health advice.
“We understand the sacrifice our athletes, supports staff and umpires will be making by relocating to Queensland for an extended period and we will be putting the necessary structures and processes in place to ensure they are all adequately supported during this time.”
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said hosting the season is another way Queensland can help.
“The resumption of sport is another step back towards a normal life and we all want to see that,” she said.
“We have close to 37,000 junior players and the opportunity for them to see the best of the best playing right across the state and be inspired is incredible.”
Last September, the 26-year-old Wallace was voted the Nissan Player of the Match after firing the New South Wales Swifts to the crown, 64-47 over Sunshine Coast Lightning at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre.
Wallace scored 40 goals from 44 attempts to end the season with 637 goals from 695 attempts for the second spot behind Jamaican Jhaniele Fowler 709/753, while another Jamaican, Shimona Nelson, was third with 637/724.
The winner of the “Player of the Year” in the English Vitality Netball Super League in 2016, Wallace, who will start her fourth season with club when the competition gets going, now has a three-year career tally of 1,580 goals from 1,739 attempts.