Future Vixens meet their idols

THE stars came out for the opening of Moe Football Netball club’s junior twilight competition on Thursday with Melbourne Vixens’ Geva Mentor and Karyn Howarth in attendance for a meet and greet session.

The netball superstars were swarmed by about 500 eager youths in what they described as a great opportunity to inspire the Valley’s juniors to greater heights in the future.

“Hopefully we’ll see some of these girls running around for the Vixens after we retire. A lot of the girls look up to us and we’re an idol to a lot of them,” Howarth said.

“It’s an opportunity for us to come out here and have a little more of a personal touch with the kids.”

The aptly named England representative Mentor, who has recently taken on a country netball-oriented role within the Vixens structure, said it was a great opportunity to engage with the region’s up and coming talents.

“I think that’s the beauty of us coming out here; yes we can give clinics but then you’re dealing with one or two of us against 50 kids or so, so hopefully we can have more of a personal and intimate experience with them,” she said.

The club’s twilight competition has attracted 50 teams this year, a big step up from last season’s 22 entries. Club president Ronnie Clark said the Vixens’ presence was a huge thrill for the juniors.

“It’s like having a league footballer come down. These girls never get to see them in the flesh… so I am really excited for them,” she said.