Netballers on the Chatham Islands playing under the watchful eye of Nelson’s Vicki Reid. Photo: Supplied.

Taking netball to the Chathams

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A local netball stalwart has been helping spread the game to all corners of the country.

Vicki Reid recently returned from a weekend in the Chatham Islands where she ran an umpiring clinic.

“I have a family member over there who asked if I knew anybody that would be keen to go over and help out with their umpires and I said ‘yea, I will’.”

She says there is a really enthusiastic netball community on the island that were incredibly receptive.

“There was quite a range of skill levels with some having played at a reasonable level in New Zealand, but that’s hard to maintain when you aren’t surrounded by those types of players.”

Vicki says the netball was played in very good spirit.

“It’s amazing to go to a community that is cut off but still see some really passionate people making it happen.”

Vicki was coaching a small handful of regular, self-trained umpires, and some who were doing it for the first time.

“I’d love to go back again, such a shame it’s so damn expensive.”

Vicki hopes she can revisit later in the season to touch base and see what sort of progress they have made.

“I want to try get them to an even greater level,” she says.

Vicki wears multiple netball hats in Nelson, as a player, umpire, scorer and board member of Netball Mainland, and has even attended three world championships and a Commonwealth Games as a statistician.

Vicki was awarded a New Zealand Order of Merit Award for her services to netball.

She managed the finance for the $13.1 million stadium project on a voluntary basis, co-ordinating the profits of fundraising activities, meeting accountancy and audit requirements, and organising funds from local councils.

She has been Finance Manager of Nelson Netball since 1999 and has made a long-term commitment to netball in the Nelson region as an umpire, coach and player.

She is a highly-regarded netball statistician, who has performed this role at the ANZ Netball Championships and the World Netball Championships.

Vicki will also be playing premier netball for the next five weeks, after her side, Jacks, were promoted to the top grade.

“I don’t know how this old body will handle running around at centre, but we’ll see how we go,” she says.