Narrabri Netball Association’s 2024 campaign got underway on Saturday as the new-look Bev Burrows Courts hosted round one and two matches.

The season was scheduled to begin a week earlier on Saturday, May 4, but that day was washed out following an abundance of rain in Narrabri. Conditions were quite wet again on Saturday but the association and the players powered through to get the games played.

There are four competitive grades again this season – two seniors and two juniors. There are eight teams in senior A-grade, four teams in senior B-grade, five teams in the junior under-11-13 competition and five teams in the junior under-9/10 competition.

The A-grade sides will play against each other once across seven rounds before the division splits into two groups of four. Teams will then play out the subsequent rounds and the grand finals in either A-grade or the A-reserve grade.

The B-grade teams will all play against their respective opponents three time across a 12-week regular season ahead of the finals.

The junior divisions’ teams will play against their respective opponents three times each across a 15-round campaign ahead of their finals series.

NNA have introduced two super rounds for the juniors in 2024, with rounds six, seven and eight to be held on June 15, and rounds 14, 15 and the washed-out round one to be played on August 17. Mini games will be two 10-minute halves in length, and the results will count towards the ladder as the standard games do.

The NNA’s semi-finals will be played on Saturday, August 24, followed by grand final day to close out the season on Saturday, August 31. The A-grade and A-reserve sides are expected to play their round games up until August 24, with the two top-ranked teams in each grade going through to the deciders.

Saturday’s round one A-grade games were won by Tourist Tornadoes, The Goats, Pharmacy Ferns and Flames. The Tornadoes received a forfeit from Namoi Mirriii, Ferns outscored All Nets 20-12, Flames downed Grubs 22-16, and The Goats defeated Mii Mii Memorial 12-9.

The round two results then saw the Tornadoes prevail 25-6 against Mii Mii Memorial, Flames edge out All Nets 19-17, The Goats beat Pharmacy Ferns 14-11 and Grubs win by forfeit against Namoi Mirrii.

Those results saw the Tornadoes, The Goats and Flames finish the day undefeated on four points, ranked first to third, respectively. Fourth-placed Pharmacy Ferns and fifth-placed Grubs have a win each and are on two points, and the teams ranked sixth to eighth on zero points are all yet to win, which are All Nets, Mii Mii Memorial and Namoi Mirrii.

The B-grade matches on Saturday were won by Agies Rural Renegades and Golden Gurls. Agies downed Hot Shots 7-4 in round one and Namoi Songbirds 21-8 in round two, while Golden Gurls defeated the Songbirds 12-7 in round one and Hot Shots 10-6 in round two. That saw first-placed side Agies and the second-placed Golden Gurls end the day on four points and the third-placed Hot Shots and fourth-placed Namoi Songbirds end the day with no points.

There was only one game played in the under-11-13 junior competition on Saturday and it saw Namoi Cotton Thunderbirds outscore the C and W Firebirds 22-2. The other match did not go ahead as Giants forfeited to Lightning, while Swifts sat out with the bye.

Both under-9/10 junior games were played, with Valley Vixens outscoring WWBC Swifts 6-1 and Rubies getting up 7-1 over the Diamonds. Sapphires had the round two bye.

This Saturday’s round three draw is as follows:
Under-9/10 – Diamonds v Valley Vixen on court seven; WWBC Swifts v Sapphires on court eight. Rubies have the bye.
Under-11-13 – C and W Firebirds v Lightning on court two; Namoi Cotton Thunderbirds v Swifts on court three. Giants have the bye.
B-grade – Namoi Songbirds v Hotshots on court one; Golden Gurls v Agies Rural Renegades on court two.
A-grade – Tourist Tornadoes v Grubs on court three; All Nets v Namoi Mirrii on court six; Pharmacy Ferns v Mii Mii Memorial on court seven; The Goats v Flames on court eight.

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