Silver Ferns Share Team Secrets with Waikato Residents
28 July 2015
Silver Ferns Share Team Secrets with Waikato Residents Ahead of NWC
A lucky group of Hamilton netball fans have made the most of a chance to quiz Silver Ferns’ stars ahead of watching them compete at the Netball World Cup.
Key members of the Kiwi squad, including Maria Tutaia and Katrina Grant, took time out from training to share team secrets and travel tips with an audience of over 100 dedicated Waikato fans.
Most of the attendees, including sisters Ruth Hitchcock, Frances Canty and Dorothy Grubb of Hauraki Plains and Matamata, will be travelling to Sydney next month to cheer on the team courtside.
The sisters and other local fans were thrilled to rub shoulders with the top sportswomen, and took their chance to grill them on their favourite places to travel, the worst roommates, and who are the naughty ones at the back of the bus while on the road.
Tutaia and Grant were joined by fellow players Shannon Francois and Malia Paseka at the exclusive House of Travel Waikato and Calder & Lawson event, held at the the Hotel Novotel Tainui Hamilton.
The sport superstars kept the attendees entertained with revelations including the fact that Tutaia is always the ‘backseat baddie’ claiming the rear seats in the tour bus whenever the team is travelling.
Popular player Tutaia shared her love for Italy, and in particular, the nation’s vibrant capital city of Rome. “The history of it, the cobblestones, tourist spots, the people, and the aroma of food at every corner. And I can't believe the woman are so slim and full of style with all the rich food available!”
She also spoke of her plans to take her elderly parents to the historic city after the World Cup, and specifically to the Vatican, which holds a special place in her father’s heart as he was raised Catholic.
Meanwhile, goal defence/keep
star Grant revealed Berlin holds a special place in her
heart due to the fascinating history and spectacular scenery
of the European city, and also talked about her exotic
adventure to Guatemala.
Kirstin Daley of House of Travel Calder & Lawson says the event, made possible due to House of Travel’s sponsorship of the national team, was a chance for passionate locals to get to know their sporting idols better ahead of the big event.
“It’s a chance for these netball fans to get excited about travelling to the Netball World Cup, and it gets them closer to athletes who can seem untouchable,” says Daley.
“The Silver Ferns girls are incredibly approachable, have a great sense of humour, and really know how to connect with their fans.”
Daley says aside from talking about the conditions for play in various countries, the athletes mostly talk about their international experiences in similar terms to any other Kiwi travellers.
“They talk about whether the people are friendly, and if the food is good, which are also very important aspects to our own customers when they are travelling.”
Approximately 65 Waikato residents are jetting across the ditch In August as part of a House of Travel Netball World Cup package deal to wave the flag for the Silver Ferns, who are seeking to reclaim the world title for the first time since 2003.