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Housby praises netball officials

Helen has been speaking about the Suncorp decision to AAP

England star Helen Housby has praised Super Netball for ensuring foreign players are as well looked after financially as their Australian teammates amid coronavirus-enforced pay cuts.

It was announced last Friday that international players will be supported to the same level as the locals with wage cuts for all players, previously set at 70 per cent, now capped at 50 per cent until May 31.

“It’s very reassuring and I think the imports are being treated very well and brought to the same level as the Australians because we know we are not eligible for JobKeeper,” NSW Swifts and England goal attack Housby told AAP.

“I’ve actually been really proud of the way netball has handled all of this. I think we’ve been very proactive in the approach. As a playing group I feel quite supported with the (players) association and the powers-that-be at Netball Australia and what they are trying to do. It’s always been quite transparent with where their thoughts are.”

While some imports have returned to their home country, Housby is one of several staying in Australia, though the start of Super Netball has been postponed from May 2 with the situation to be reviewed next month.

A key member of the Swifts’ 2019 title-winning side, Housby shares accommodation in Sydney with fellow shooting import, and last year’s grand final MVP, Sam Wallace.

“One of the reasons that I decided to stay here and not return back to England when this (the coronavirus pandemic) all started, is because Sam is from Trinidad and the borders closed pretty much instantly, so she had no chance of getting home,” Housby said.

“I didn’t really want her to be in the apartment for months on end on her own because I know I wouldn’t like to do that, so that kind of weighed on my mind about me staying here and it’s been the best place for us to train together.”

Looking for different and stimulating ways to train, Housby has posted a video on Twitter of her using a mini trampoline under a netball post, which rebounds the ball back to her after she takes a shot.

“It’s been nice to see a lot of young girls replicating it back home and sending me videos of that,” she said.

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