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  Netball

Evering rejoins Sunshine Girls

 
André Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter

Towering defender Kasey Evering will make her return to the national senior netball programme later today when she joins the Connie Francis-coached charges at the Leila Robinson courts for the first time in over three years.

The in-your-face goaltender has been out of the national squad due to a number of issues, such as injuries and a well-documented falling out with the Jamaica Netball Association (JNA) administration.

Those issues were, however, ironed out at a meeting convened by the JNA hierarchy on Monday evening, with both parties airing their differences and charting a solution for the defender's smooth reintroduction to the programme ahead of upcoming assignments such as the Commonwealth Games and the World Netball Series.

Meeting to address issues

"We had a meeting and talked about our issues and stuff like that. After all was said and done, I was given the clearance to rejoin the national programme," said Evering when contacted by The Gleaner yesterday. "There had been some issues on both sides that were talked about openly but we managed to come to a mutual agreement so everything is in place."

Evering, who only recently resumed playing after overcoming a career-threatening knee injury and multiple surgeries, is highly regarded as one of the best defenders ever produced by the country and she is looking forward to continue her contribution to the national programme.

The Tivoli Gardens player represented Jamaica at two World Netball Championships, the 2006 Commonwealth Games and also at the World Youth Netball Championships in 2000 and also attracted interest from several overseas clubs during her career.

Despite being away from the game for a while, Evering, who was also told to expect a much more difficult training programme in this new dispensation, is more than ready to tackle the challenges and is confident that she will be able to keep pace with the quickening game.

"I've never had a problem with the pace of the game, but since my injury, it's going to be harder for me plus I have to play catch-up so to speak. All of that is going to be a challenge, but I'm up for it," Evering said. "I have an aim and a goal to get back to the highest level and I'm prepared to work with the team and coaches to get back to where I was and even better."

A challenge it should be indeed, but Evering, who only a few months ago could barely walk, has become accustomed to difficulties and is channelling her energies to tackle her latest goal with the same zeal and determination.

"The training is now a lot harder than it was when I was last there but life itself is a challenge and if you want good your nose have to run so to speak," said a philosophical sounding Evering. "I have come this far; from a point where I couldn't even walk, so I'm not 100 per cent yet, but with the right attitude in training, I know I'll be able to get back to my best in no time."

'Me time'

Evering., however., maintained that she does not regret her decision to retire in 2006, adding that it allowed her to get herself to the point where she is today.

"I don't really regret that decision because I really wanted some time for myself to get some things done and I have been able to sort out most things so I really can't say that I have any major regrets," Evering reasoned.

Meanwhile, JNA president Marva Bernard welcomed the developments and expressed confidence in the six footer's ability and commitment.

"Kasey is a very talented player and we will be assessing her progress over the next three months, but I am certain that if she puts her head and ability in the right place, then she can make any team," said Bernard. "We had some discussions and we explained that things have changed since she was last in the programme and we got some commitments from her. We look forward to having her back."

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