HeartKids Cup grows in stature

THE HeartKids Cup will double in size in 2013 with at least four teams locked in for the netball competition in Orange. 

This year, the inaugural event was contested by Orange’s State League (1) side and Baulkham Hills.

In 2013, they will be joined by two of the top teams in the Canberra Netball Association competition. 

Event organiser and Orange State League representative Mardi Aplin is excited about the competition’s quick expansion.

“It’s an inter-state competition now with the Canberra teams coming into it,” Aplin said.

“It can only get bigger.”

The event raises money for HeartKids, a charity supporting the families of children with heart disease.

As part of the event, the Baulkham Hills players will, again, run a clinic for junior players in the region in the morning before the senior players take to the court.

This year, Baulkham Hills downed Orange 61-34 in an exhibition match.

Aplin said Orange and Baulkham Hills would be the first game of the weekend as the city versus country match.

All four teams will play for the HeartKids Cup.

Games will be played on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning at the Orange PCYC.

The Robin Hood Hotel is putting up prize money.

This year’s event did more than raise money for HeartKids.

The exhibition game gave Orange, which at that stage had won the previous 16 Central West State League titles, a challenge the players had been been craving.

For Baulkham Hills, it allowed the players to have another game and get to know each other better ahead of a busy season.

Baulkham Hills went on to finish third in the Waratah Cup, the state’s top competition, under the guidance of Briony Akle.

The Baulkham Hills side boasts Australian Institute of Sport scholarship holders Kristina Brice, Gabrielle Simpson and Alix McDermott.

Aplin said the event has also helped Orange netball.

“By playing this we got Orange back on the map,” she said.

Netball NSW delegates will attend the 2013 event and in 2014 it is expected NSW Swifts players will also be involved.

The HeartKids Cup event will be held on February 9 and 10.

The junior clinic will run on February 9 followed by games on the same day as well as February 10 at the Orange PCYC.

To book a place in the clinic or to find out more information, email Mardi Aplin at lifestudio@bigpond.com or call her on 0416 112 885.

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