FIVE ANZ Championship franchises have confirmed their captains ahead of the 2014 season.
Four have been re-appointed to the roles with reigning champions the Adelaide Thunderbirds to begin their title defence under a new leader.
Star wing defence Renae Hallinan has taken over the role from Natalie von Bertouch, who retired after leading the Thunderbirds to their second ANZ Championship title in July.
Hallinan will be supported by joint vice-captains Rebecca Bulley and Emily Beaton, who is the last remaining Thunderbirds foundation player following von Bertouch’s retirement.
Hallinan is entering her third season with Adelaide after crossing from the Melbourne Vixens.
She had a stellar 2013 season, being named at wing defence in the Foxtel ANZ Championship All-Star Team, playing in her second ANZ Championship title and being named the winner of the coveted Liz Ellis Diamond, awarded to Australia’s best player at international level and in the ANZ Championship.
"I am honoured to be a part of this team and look forward to working hard for success in 2014," Hallinan said when her appointment was confirmed this week.
"There are 12 leaders in this team, each and every one of us will contribute on and off the court."
Hallinan is the first new captain to be officially appointed by a franchise leading into the 2014 season.
The NSW Swifts announced that midcourter Kimberlee Green would be the sole leader of their team next year. Green has been co-captain for the past two seasons with Mo’onia Gerrard, who is taking a break from the sport in 2014 to chase her Olympic Games dream.
Green will head up a new-look Swifts leadership group consisting of shooters Carla Dziwoki and Susan Pratley and recruit Sharni Layton.
“Although leadership is a responsibility we all share, captaining the club I represent with such pride remains a great honour and a career highlight,” Green said.
“With new faces and philosophies in both our coaching team and roster in 2014, it’s a very exciting time for all associated with the NSW Swifts."
Laura Geitz will again lead the Mission Queensland Firebirds in 2014 while, across the Tasman, the Haier Pulse and EasiYo Tactix have reappointed Katrina Grant and Anna Thompson respectively.