Tuks ladies Lenize Potgieter, Geanie Steyn and Izette Lubbe were selected to be part of the prestigious Spar Protea Netball team. The Spar Proteas beat Wales in the Spar Challenge International Netball Series at the Durban International Convention Centre, which took place from 17-19 June. In the final matches the Proteas overtook Wales with a score of 64- 50, while the baby Proteas thrashed their Welsh counterparts 88-2. Goal shooter Potgieter reached a pivotal moment of her netball career.
How has being a part of team like this helped shape you as a netball player?
Each individual [in the team] adds something different to me as a netball player. They push you hard to become the best, not to give up and not to back down during training sessions. This team also boosts your confidence when it’s low or keeps on adding to it when it’s high. They’re hard workers [and that] makes me want to work hard.
How has TuksNetball helped develop you as a netball player?
TuksNetball [has] enabled me to reach my goal of becoming a Protea netball player by helping me reach my full potential. When we go on tours, we stay in backpackers which help us stay humble, keep our feet on the ground and become more independent women. They provide fitness sessions, gym sessions, as well as individual sessions to make us stronger, fitter, faster and better players.
Now that this series has ended, what are your netball hopes for the rest of the year?
Definitely to win Varsity Cup this year. Also, we have a tour in Australia and New Zealand [at the] end of August, beginning September where I hope that we can show the Aussies and Kiwis how much we’ve improved and give them a run for their money.
Is your training strictly practicing netball or do you branch out into other areas of fitness and wellbeing?
Basically we have our gym sessions to improve our strength and explosive power, fitness sessions to improve our fitness, individual sessions to work on your specific skills that are required for your position – sometimes speed and agility – and then netball training sessions where the team trains together to put the final puzzle pieces in place. We have a nutritionist that help us stay in shape and also a biokineticist that works with us at the gym to correct our technique.
You have given advice to aspiring female athletes, but what advice would you have given your past self?
To work on my fitness, eat healthier, and learn the correct gym technique from an earlier age to avoid injuries I have now and be fitter and stronger for the game.
What ambitions do you have for the rest of your netball career?
I would love to make netball my career. Hopefully in a few years I will be able to call myself a professional athlete. I have a wish to be seen by the Australian selectors to hopefully join their netball league in Australia in 2017.