Central Manawa

National Netball League 

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The NCZ Central Manawa programme is a periodised, performance netball programme that runs from a pre-season start in September to the end of competition in July the following year. This programme is led, developed and implemented by NCZ. 

The programme commences with the selection of a wider training squad from NCZ Centre club competitions and Centre nominations of appropriately skilled players, who participate in the Central Manawa pre-season training programme.  Players are selected through a variety of mechanisms –

  • Observations by the Head of Selectors take place at NCZ Open tournaments;
  • Observations also take place in players local competitions;
  • Centres may nominate players to the squad;
  • Current squad members who wish to play NNL in the following year, are automatically included;
  • Any player who has recently arrived in our Zone for employment and/or education reasons, may also be included.

These athletes are provided strength and conditioning programmes and individualised support to help them prepare for Central Manawa trials in the New Year.  Monitoring of the Central Manawa wider training squad occurs at regular intervals during the pre-season from September to January.

At any time during the pre-season and before the final Central Manawa trial players may be added and/or de-selected.  Performance, potential and attitude will all be considered when making decisions about selection and de-selection.

The final Central Manawa squad is selected at a trial day in January and announced within one week of selection.  All squad athletes receive a completed NCZ player profile detailing their achievement against NNZ standards. 

The Central Manawa training squad will comprise approximately 16 players and these athletes will embark upon a weekly training regime comprising at least 2 netball practices, 2 supervised conditioning sessions, 2 supervised strength sessions and a minimum of 60 minutes of game play per week.  Netball practices will take place in Wellington, so athletes must be prepared to travel to and from every practice or re-locate.

Each athlete completes an individual performance plan (IPP), which reflects her on and off court needs.  We use this plan to assist the athlete to enhance both her life and netball performances. Standards are measured and monitored against NNZ national performance guidelines and protocols including recommendations around load management for younger athletes.

Central Manawa players and staff are part of the Pulse succession planning.  Player selections prioritise Pulse potential as a selection criterion and the programme strives to produce one contracted player per year.  Coaching and management staff are appointed with a view to growing the pool of Pulse ready coaches and managers in the Zone.  We are also mindful that succession takes place over time and so we aim to retain at least half of our squad from year to year.

We also explore other playing and netball opportunities we could offer to Central Manawa players who do not achieve a Pulse contract in any given year.  We are mindful that each year we have lost Central Manawa players to other franchises because we have re-signed most of our youthful Pulse team and therefore have not had contract openings for the next tier of talented players in our Zone.  Such opportunities would include, but not be limited to, increasing the number of training partners, having 12 on the bench at all home games and participation in pre-season competition.