West Coast Fever has been advised by the Suncorp Super Netball League they will not be playing any games in Perth this season and will remain in Queensland until the end of the competition. This is a huge blow for the Fever who, for the past three months have been working alongside and received endorsement from the State Government, WA Police and VenuesWest, putting forward plans which would see clubs safely travel to Perth and play up to six matches at RAC Arena.
West Coast Fever Managing Director, Simon Taylor said it was incredibly disappointing that all parties could not find a way to overcome the hurdles to play games in WA.
“We are extremely disappointed with this result; WA is arguably the safest state in this country, and we truly believe we have a strong case to play games here in Perth.” Mr Taylor said.
“To our members, partners and fans, we thank you for your support and encouragement, we did everything in our power to bring the competition home.”
The League has cited player welfare as the reason behind the decision to keep all clubs in the Queensland hub.
Fever Head Coach Stacey Marinkovich said she was not only disappointed for the players, but also the fans.
“We truly are grateful to have the best fan base in the competition; your support and encouraging messages have helped this team through an unprecedented season.” Marinkovich said.
“This decision will only make our playing group more determined to attack every game and apply pressure to our opponents. We have past the halfway mark of the season and I’m excited to see what we do from now to the end of the season.”
The welfare of the players and coaching staff is paramount, and Fever support any decision that places player and staff wellbeing at its core. However, the Club is deeply disappointed that the League and clubs were unable to provide West Coast Fever with an opportunity to overcome these concerns and that the opportunity to play in WA in front of the League’s best fans in what is indisputably the best venue in the league.
The Club has gone to extraordinary lengths to secure the best accommodation, living conditions, financial support, match day support, mitigation of costs and more – in addition to offering what is currently the safest environment in Australia to protect the health and well-being of players, officials and the community.