MISSION Queensland Firebirds have re-signed premiership wing attack Caitlyn Nevins and added one of Australia’s bright young talents in Mahalia Cassidy to its list for the 2016 season.
Nevins enjoyed an outstanding debut season with the Firebirds after switching from the Melbourne Vixens, winning back-to-back titles at two different teams.
Cassidy, who has been named in Australia’s 21/U team, joins the Firebirds full-time after being called up as a replacement player when Verity Simmons suffered a long-term injury and made her made her ANZ Championship debut in Round 8 against Kia Magic.
The 28-year-old Nevins played every match and consolidated her spot in the Firebirds starting line-up by the end of the season.
“I am really excited to be playing with the Firebirds for another season,” Nevins said
“I thoroughly enjoyed the training environment which saw a lot of growth in my game and am looking forward to creating history and becoming the first club in ANZ Championship history to go back-to-back.”
The 19-year-old Cassidy is excited to be given an opportunity to train with the reigning champions full-time.
“I wasn’t expecting to be offered a contract but I was hoping to get one, but I did not know if I would or not,” Cassidy said.
“It was really great to have an opportunity to train and be part of the environment for an extended period of time but I still have lots to learn.”
The Firebirds have also announced that Simmons has granted a release from the second year of her contract and will depart the team after spending the two past two seasons in Brisbane.
The feisty wing attack requested a release from the second year of her contract for personal reasons and Netball Queensland and the Firebirds were compassionate to allowing Simmons to continue he career elsewhere.
“It wasn’t an easy decision, I was very torn,” Simmons said. “I loved my time at the Firebirds and the team but I had to do what was right for me."