Giants Netball has turned a new page in their short but rising history, with English international Jo Harten named captain for the 2020 season.
The 30-year-old becomes just the second player in club history to take on the captaincy role following the retirement of inaugural skipper Kim Green at the end of 2019 season.
Harten has been a member of the leadership group since the beginning of the Giants’ tenure in the Super Netball competition and is expected to make a seamless transition into the top job.
Former captain Green said Harten represents everything the Giants stand for and said she is proud and honoured to pass the title to her.
“To be honest I wasn’t too surprised to hear it was Jo,” she said.
“Jo has essentially led from the start and helped me with leading the group the past three years.
“All the players that have been around the extended group from the beginning have seen her leadership progression and have witnessed her passion and desire to win.
“On-court when you need a player to stand up, that’s Jo Harten for sure. Off the court she’s fun, relaxed and she sees things that other people often don’t.”
Harten said it is an honour to be voted as captain in a new-look leadership team.
“It’s a really nice mark of respect from the players, but I think we’re the type of group that could see anyone in the leadership group,” she said.
“We’ve had Kim as our captain for the first three years and it’s really big shoes to fill.
“I’m super excited to take the reins from her and follow in her footsteps and just keep the group tracking along as we were.”
Harten will be supported by 24-year-old Kristiana Manu’a as vice-captain, who will step into a formal leadership position for the first time this season.
The Kiwi defender celebrated 50 games last year and had one of her most impressive seasons to date.
The 2020 Super Netball competition begins in May.
Nathan Taylor is the Weekender’s Deputy Editor and Senior Sports Writer. He also compiles the weekly Chatter on the Box TV column. Nathan is an award-winning journalist, who has worked at the Weekender for nearly a decade.