Queensland Firebird Kim Jenner has returned to Townsville to be with her family, including sister Sarah, to ride out the coronavirus pandemic. She is continuing to train at home as she can. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.
Queensland Firebird Kim Jenner has returned to Townsville to be with her family, including sister Sarah, to ride out the coronavirus pandemic. She is continuing to train at home as she can. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.

Big pay sacrifice ‘what was best for the game’

NETBALL  has presented a united front in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

So much so, the nation's professional stars accepted a significant pay cut in what seemed like a heartbeat.

Following the postponement of the 2020 Super Netball season, Queensland Firebirds defender Kim Jenner has returned home to Townsville to ride out the pandemic. What has quickly been missed is the camaraderie between the 22-year-old and her teammates. However, they are currently devising ways to stay connected and focused on a potential season launch on July 1.

To get to that point, Super Netball players have accepted a 70 per cent pay cut to enable the code to get through this financially draining period.

It was a big sacrifice but it was a necessary action for the sustainability of the game in these unprecedented times.

"At the end of the day we had all the discussions we needed to have, we have an awesome players' association rep who has been so good trying to work out how we're going to keep going as athletes," she said.

"It's what was best for the game at this point in time and hopefully we can reassess it a bit down the track.

"It's uncertain times, but we're definitely happy with where the game was, where the game is and very optimistic for the future as well."

Liz Watson of the Vixens and Kim Jenner of the Firebirds contest the ball during the Round 1 Super Netball match between the Melbourne Vixens and the Queensland Firebirds at Melbourne Arena in Melbourne, Saturday, April 27, 2019. (AAP Image/Daniel Pockett)
Liz Watson of the Vixens and Kim Jenner of the Firebirds contest the ball during the Round 1 Super Netball match between the Melbourne Vixens and the Queensland Firebirds at Melbourne Arena in Melbourne, Saturday, April 27, 2019. (AAP Image/Daniel Pockett)

It has only been a couple of days of self-imposed isolation, but Jenner can already sense the itch to get on the court will kick in quickly.

Now it is a matter of keeping herself occupied until the situation resolves, with her university studies in education at the forefront along with her training.

Deprived of constant contact with her Firebirds teammates, the Townsville product has found an ample training partner right at home.

Courtesy of her sister, Sarah, the rising netball star has been kept on her toes away from the court.

She said being around family was important at the time like this, and fortunately her loved ones do not seem willing to let her drop the ball.

"(Sarah) is good, she did play netball when she was at school so she's good to have on hand," Jenner said.

"Just having someone to pass the ball with and keep that touch and ball in hand (is important).

"It's tricky with everything going on at the moment but it's a good distraction as well keeping busy and doing something else during the day."

Originally published as Big pay sacrifice 'what was best for the game'



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