After roughly 30 years between drinks, according to coach Robbie Gregg, Quirindi’s open netball side made a triumphant return to the Samsung State Championships.
Quirindi overcame a slow opening day to claim third in division two.
A tough draw – including games against winners Bathurst along with top five teams Glen Innes and Kurri Kurri – saw Quirindi drop two games on the opening day.
However, that would be the last of the losing for Quirindi at the competition.
“I think we just didn’t really know what to expect on the first day,” Gregg said.
“To come across eventual winners Bathurst in the second game of the weekend was a real eye opener.
“We were a bit disappointed with our result against Glen Innes because it was one that probably got away from us.
“I think it made everyone much more determined to make sure we were right up there going into the last day.”
The side did just that by winning six from six on day two which included a tournament-defining victory.
“The standout match, definitely in terms of our own belief, was against Hawkesbury, they ended up in second,” Gregg said.
“We hung in there in a tough situation. They were a very physical team and we haven’t come across a lot of that.
“It did throw us off a bit but we hung around and got the result, that was probably the result of the weekend.”
A further five wins and a draw on the final day wrapped up third place for Quirindi.
Gregg and his troops will now turn their attention to the Regional League.
Quirindi will be looking for a third straight Northern Inland crown.
The Northern Inland games will be played over four weekends in July and August before the state finals are played later in the year.
Gregg is after another title but accepts it won’t be a walk in the park.
“Our end goal is to win here [Northern Inland] again to make it through to the state finals in September,” Gregg said.
“That’s what we’re trying to achieve but it won’t be easy, there’s a lot of strong teams around.”