19/04/2024
Sam Wallace and Helen Housby embrace after victory in the semi final of the 2021 season.

Sam Wallace and Helen Housby embrace after victory in the semi final of the 2021 season. Image: NSW Swifts (Twitter)

The NSW Swifts have announced that shooting duo Helen Housby and Sam Wallace will be returning to the Premiers for two more seasons.

The NSW Swifts have announced that Sam Wallace and Helen Housby will both remain with the club for a further two years. For all the Suncorp Super Netball signing news, stay up to date with our Off-Season Hub and follow The Inner Sanctum’s netball podcast, Over a Third, on Twitter and Instagram to get the news when it breaks.

The duo, who have been the starting goal circle for the premiership-winning side since 2017, are set to continue their devastating partnership as the reigning premiers embark on their defence of the title.

Wallace, who hails from Trinidad and Tobago, was the Swifts’ MVP for a third time in 2021, equalling the club record set by Catherine Cox. She has starred in 75 games for the club, and scored 585 goals at 93 per cent accuracy in 2021.

Her starring performances included brilliant performances in the finals series, and four matches where she shot with flawless accuracy. Her combination with Housby, in particular, has made it difficult on defences around the league.

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Housby, an English Rose, is currently preparing to take on a number of her Swifts teammates in the upcoming series against the Australian Diamonds. Since joining the Swifts, Housby has been a key member of the team, both for her clutch shooting, and her playmaking, feeding Wallace as the two have become a true partnership.

In 66 appearances for the Swifts, Housby has shown the same cool under pressure that netted her the winning goal for the English Roses at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, as they took home the gold medal.

She has backed it up with two premierships, including a clutch intercept in the 2021 grand final, and a masterful performance that helped the Swifts romp to the title.

Head coach Briony Akle was thrilled to be welcoming back the international duo for a further two years.

“Sam and Helen have been instrumental to our growth and success since they joined the club, and now have an extra maturity and intelligence to their netball knowledge,” the two-time premiership coach said.

“When we’ve needed them to step up in big games, they have delivered time and time again, and we are thrilled both will remain in Sydney for the next chapter of this club’s history.

“As well as their telepathy on the court, they are very close off it and are more than just teammates. They are friends who care deeply about each other and that’s the bond we are looking for across this club.”

While Housby and Wallace have been a successful duo, the third member of their shooting circle, Sophie Garbin, will not be returning to the Swifts in 2022, after taking up a contract with Collingwood Magpies.

Akle lauded the duo, and is confident that they will be able to continue their strength, despite the missing member of the trio.

“From a performance perspective, a lot of hard graft goes in from our defenders and midcourters to earn extra possession and I know having targets like Helen and Sam in the attack circle is a real reward for them,” she said.

“We might have added a seventh Premiership to the cabinet recently but there is no intention to rest on our laurels and both Helen and Sam are key to where we want to go next.”

Housby and Wallace have joined four other Swifts in re-signing with the Club for the premiership defence, and it’s expected that the Swifts will announce the remainder of the 2022 roster in the coming days.

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