Nani Waqaira, aged 17, attends Howick College and plays netball for the Howick Netball Team. Nani, originally from Fiji, plays Goal Defence and Goal Attack. With her height of 1.81m tall, she’s a formidable player.
Born in Fiji, Nani started playing netball at primary school when she was 8. She continued to play in school teams until, at 13, she was selected for the NZ Under-13’s team and moved to New Zealand in 2015. Nani continued her netball career while attending Howick College. Ironically, when she first started playing, Nani wasn’t too keen on the game – she couldn’t catch the ball very easily and wasn’t used to playing a team sport. But with coaching she began to enjoy the game (and learnt to catch the ball!). It wasn’t long before Nani was playing club netball and then began representing her city in inter-city games.
The schedule is a tough one – the team trains at least 4 times a week and they play matches on the weekends. Adelita Sotutu, Howick Netball Director and Team Coach trains the girls and she pushes them hard, encouraging them to play at their best all the time. This spirit has delivered some great team results over the past few years.
Nani aspires to play at ANZ level and is well on her way to achieving that goal. The team is currently taking part in the UNISS (Upper North Island Secondary School) Championships.
We’ll be following their progress with a regular blog from Nani.
Snapshot of Nani:
Favourite TV programme – Reign
Favourite food – Sushi
Favourite school subjects – Health and PE
Least favourite subject – Maths
Favourite Band – Maroon5
Most admired netball player – Casey Kopua