It may be sweeping across New Zealand at the moment but Fast5 netball is making its way into some of the smaller communities around Victoria.
Thursday nights at Flora Hill Stadium in Bendigo is currently running a Fast5 short season competition, the modified format proving a hit with the local players.
Netball Victoria General Manager of Game Development Katie Redding said that a major strategic focus at Netball Victoria over the next 5 year Strategic Planning cycle is to develop modified types of netball to increase participation opportunities within the sport.
“Market research tells us that people want ‘non-traditional’ versions of sport that are less as structured with more flexible commitment and rules,” Ms Redding said.
“The Fast5 social competition implemented by Flora Hill is a brilliant example of a successful modified version of netball that is gathering momentum and reaching a potentially diverse market of participants.”
“We are looking forward to seeing how this particular competition takes off and working on developing more varied netball options such as Fast5 across Victoria in the next couple of years.”
Players participating in the local league have said the modified rules and strategies take a little bit to get used to but they are adjusting to the fast pace nature of the game.
A number of innovative rule changes have been introduced designed to test the fitness, technical ability and tactical awareness of the players. Each game is played over four six-minute quarters, promising an awesome, high-energy spectacle.
Some of the rules change are the five playing positions on court [Goal Shooter (GS), Goal Attack (GA), Centre (C), Goal Defence (GD), Goal Keeper (GK)], each games consists of four quarters of six minutes each, all other Centre Passes shall be taken by the team that did not score the last goal and substitutions may be made at intervals or at any time during play with no limit.
There are powerplay quarters and the ability to score 1,2 and 3 points for your side.
Netball Victoria Regional Development Manager North Pam Ferrari said the competition created a great atmosphere on Thursday nights at Flora Hill Stadium.
“It is great to have people interested in the sport of netball and participating no matter what the format. Fast5 netball is fresh, exciting, and another avenue to get more people involved with the sport.”