VNL: Central aims to go one better with rized recruit on board 

MONASH University Central has the potential and the belief to win the Victorian Netball League title, now it needs the results to match.

Central fell a game short of the championship division grand final last season, losing in the preliminary final, but with the majority of its side remaining along with the signature of Victorian 21 and under goal shooter Sarah Main, Central shapes as a contender for the title.

Central coach Leesa Maxfield said her side was training three times a week and raring to go for the VNL preseason competition which begins this Wednesday night.

She said her players were using their finals exit as motivation for the new season.

"While we were disappointed to lose the preliminary final by a goal, I think we also had to be realistic," she said.

"We didn't have our starting two goalers for the finals so I was still happy where we finished considering what we had to deal with.

"Now we have picked up a few players and changed a few things.

"We want to rectify our loss and the players have that belief already, now we need to get into the rhythm of the season."

Main crosses to Central from Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels and she will take the place of respected shooter Lauren Bennett, who gave birth to a baby girl soon after last season and is not expected to play.

"There is another Monash player for the future," Maxfield said, referring to Bennett's baby.

"There is no pressure on Lauren to play, she will come down and watch a few games and do some coaching but she can come back when she is ready."

Centre Tegan Ashmore is also expected to miss the season as she intends to step away from netball for a year.

Maxfield said Main, who is also in contention to make the Australian under-21 side, could play either goal shooter or goal attack and was a major recruit for the club.

"Sarah was looking for a new club and she came to our trials," she said.

"We sat down and talked with her and luckily she decided to play with us.

"It's a big opportunity for Sarah and for us."

Central will also have the services of Melbourne Vixens players Karyn Howarth and Jo Curran while Sharelle McMahon is aligned with Central but not expected to play.

VNL preseason matches begin this Wednesday night with the season proper to start on February 27.

Monash University Central VNL preseason matches

February 6, Peninsula Waves v Monash University, State Netball and Hockey Centre court 4, 8.20pm; Monash University Central v VU Western Lightning, SNHC Court 5, 9pm; February 13, Monash University Central v Boroondara Genesis, SNHC Court 3, 9.40pm, Monash University Central v UB Ballarat Pride, SNHC Court 3, 10.20pm; February 20, Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Monash University Central, SNHC Court 2, 7PM, Geelong Cougars v Monash University Central, SNHC Court 2, 7.40pm.

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