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Brunei win 4th bronze in SEA Games
Monday, August 21, 2017
Her Royal Highness Princess Fadzilah Lubabul Bolkiah in a group photo with the national netball team. The national netball team was awarded bronze in the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia yesterday. – INFOFOTO

Her Royal Highness Princess Fadzilah Lubabul Bolkiah during the medal presentation ceremony. – INFOFOTO

BRUNEI Darussalam National Netball head coach Thilaka Jinadasa has underlined the need for long-term preparations and expanding the number of international exposure series highlighting that miracles do not happen overnight.

The National Netball team was awarded shared bronze with Thailand in the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games yesterday.

Having been influential in guiding the national team to two successive bronze medals including their first in Singapore, Jinadasa highlighted that achieving success requires a long period of hard work and the team need to play a lot of matches overseas to achieve international honours.

Jinadasa and her charges had to settle for bronze as Malaysia exacted sweet redemption after avenging their 2015 defeat to Singapore with an convincing victory in the gold medal match.

The reigning Asian Netball Championships holders added their second SEA Games title to their growing cabinet having won the first one also in home soil when they last hosted in 2001.

Jinadasa indicated that teams like Malaysia took the route of long-term training and international tournaments to hone their craft against the world’s best.

“If you check the other leading teams they are all from previous international tournaments and continue playing for 4-5 years in international tournaments,” said Jinadasa after the medal ceremony at the Juara Stadium Bukit Kiara yesterday.

Jinadasa emphasised that players must be consistently performing in the national level to realise any ambitions of enhancing their current development.

“It’s important players continue playing in national level. I also have six newcomers in the team for this SEA Games,” continued the national head coach.

She said that Brunei face a big challenge especially for new players coming into tournaments without adequate playing time in international stages.

“It requires long-term training and lot of international exposure to win a tournament. I think this challenge is what the foreign coaches here in Brunei are currently facing,” continued the Sri Lankan who guided his country to the 2009 Asian Netball Championships title.

The National Netball coach also hailed the support especially from Her Royal Highness Princess Fadzilah Lubabul Bolkiah who was part of the team’s management.

She also acknowledged the huge support rendered by the President of Brunei Netball Association (BNA) Datin Paduka Hajah Intan binti Haji Kasim and the Vice President of BNA Lieutenant Colonel (Rtd) Hajah Wan Shahlimar binti Haji Suhaili.

“Her Royal Highness’s support was a morale booster for the whole netball community. Our president and vice president always look after the players,’” said Jinadasa.

She said that the SEA Games had not been an easy journey with all the sacrifices and commitment that they have made.

“We had lots of ups and downs but fortunately we managed to overcome most to come up to the podium.

“We had a lot of support compared to the last time,” she further added.

Asked about the weaknesses of the side, Jinadasa said that the players took time to adjust to situations and with the level of this competition it has to be done fast adding that communication needed to be managed efficiently.

Jinadasa said that the next major competition will be the Asian Netball Championships which is likely to be held in Singapore in early September next year.

Courtesy from Borneo Bulletin