The Aussie Stingers are ready to kick off their busy international touring season with the FINA World League Super Finals in China starting tonight.
The Aussies Stingers will face the Netherlands in their first pool match, before taking on hosts China and then the formidable Spaniards.
Cementing her place back in the Aussie Stingers squad is three-time Olympian Bron Knox who returned to international competition this year after taking time away from the game post the Rio Olympic Games.
Knox has her sights firmly set on a fourth Olympics and is excited to be back on the international circuit with a new look Aussie Stingers team.
“I really enjoyed New Zealand (World League Intercontinental) and all the World League rounds. I’m looking forward to getting back into that lifestyle of just travelling and playing. I love to travel, if I can do it with my sport I’ll do it until I’m forced out.
“The World League Finals will be the start of a long season for us. We are in China for a couple of weeks and then we’re home for a couple of weeks and then back in Europe for three or four weeks and then home for two weeks to prepare for the World Cup.
“For us as a squad it’s just making sure we do everything right, step by step, and not rushing through it,” she said.
When reflecting on the new look squad Knox will be playing alongside and how that squad will prepare for Tokyo, she said water polo at the next Olympic Games will be a different style of game.
“It’s going to be interesting, especially because the Games are also changing. Going to eleven players which will definitely test a lot of people’s fitness, so I think it’s going to come down to how the team gels together and how you work with those nine or ten players in the water.
“The goalkeeper is always a constant, but you’re used to subbing a lot or subbing a little so making sure you’ve got partnerships with everyone and not just the people you’re generally in the water with is important.
“It’s not that long to go now, it’s come along really quickly and it’s just making sure every session you do you’re pushing that little bit harder to get that little bit faster or stronger or moving on your legs better.
“It’s definitely different to what I’m used to, but I think it works really well for me and I’m looking forward to developing that throughout this international season and heading into next year,” she said.
First up for the Aussie Stingers though is the FINA World League Super Finals, with Coach Sakis Kechagias announcing the team in China in which he also named Olympian Zoe Arancini captain.
Watch tonight’s match between Australia and Netherlands live via FINAtv from 7:40pm AEST.
Please see below for the Aussie Stingers team which has been selected in the first pool match against Netherlands.
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