Established Club Training Partners Ashlee Unie and Binnian Hunt have been elevated to Sunshine Coast Lightning's extended 12-athlete squad ahead of Round 1 of the Suncorp Super Netball.
The promotion is a strong vote of confidence from Head Coach Kylee Byrne and she is confident both players are up to the task after working extremely hard over the pre-season campaign.
"Binni and Ash have been part of our Lightning high performance environment for a number of years and I have seen them both flourish as athletes and as people," Byrne said.
"Extending team lists from 10 to 12 provides a great opportunity for us to bolster their development and we look forward to giving both players more exposure to Lightning game days this season.
"Ash is a skilled one-on-one defender who has emerged through the Sunshine Coast junior pathways, while Binnian complements our list of circle shooters and boasts speed and creative flair."
Unie has been elevated to the senior squad twice previously, both as an injury replacement player in 2017 as well as part of an extended squad after the 2019 Netball World Cup but is yet to take to the court.
"It is really special to be named as part of the extended squad for Lightning and it's an opportunity that I do not take lightly," Unie said.
"I'm excited to support my teammates in any way that I can and I'm determined to train hard and put my hand up for time on court if the opportunity presents itself."
Meanwhile, this is Hunt's first opportunity to experience a Lightning match day after three years as a Training Partner.
"This is something that I have worked really hard for, for a number of years, so for Kylee to put her faith in me is an incredible feeling," Hunt said.
Before joining Lightning in 2018, Hunt was also a Training Partner for Queensland Firebirds, who the Club faces in the Round One season opener on Saturday 1 August.
|Ashlee Unie||Binnian Hunt|
Images: Eyes Wide Open Images / Barry Alsop