Netball Singapore appoints new national coach
SINGAPORE — Singapore’s netball team will finally welcome a new national coach this week, nearly a year after former coach Ruth Aitken stepped down.
New Zealander Natalie Milicich, who was most recently the high performance manager and head coach of New Zealand’s Netball Central Zone, will be taking over the reins of the national team, said Netball Singapore (NS) in a press release on Monday (Sept 11).
During her time with Central Zone, the team went undefeated in the Beko National League - a developmental competition one tier below the ANZ Premiership, which is New Zealand’s top domestic netball league.
According to Central Zone’s website, Milicich, 50, has also coached at the National Provincial Championships and a broad range of national age groups.
Aitken stepped down after a successful three years in charge, which included leading the national team to the Asian Championship title in 2014 and the SEA Games gold medal in 2015.
Since Aitken’s departure, Singapore’s netball team has been led by interim national coach Yeo Mee Hong. Despite losing more than half of the 2015 team, Yeo still managed to lead Singapore to a silver at the 2017 SEA Games.
“We are delighted to appoint Natalie as the new coach for the national team and look forward to working closely together with her to continue developing the team. We believe she is the right fit for the post and her extensive experience will be a great boost to the team,” said NS president Jessica Tan.
“Our team is excited to work with the new coach and to map our goals for the team and work towards achieving those goals,” added national team captain Vanessa Marie Lee.
Milicich, who is a mother of four, said: “I’m excited to be here and look forward to settling in and working with this team of talented sports women. I spoke with Ruth when I accepted the job and I’m confident I will continue her legacy and lead the team well.”