Table of Contents
Founded in 1997, the Queensland Firebirds are an Australian netball team based in Brisbane, Queensland. Since 2017, they have played in the Suncorp Super Netball League. In 2008 to 2016, they played in the ANZ Championship, and between 1997 and 2007, they played in the Commonwealth Bank Trophy. Their home venue is the Nissan Arena.
Firebirds & the Commonwealth Bank Trophy League
The Firebirds were one of the eight Australian netball teams that founded the Commonwealth Bank Trophy League in 1997.
Firebirds & the ANZ Championship
The Firebirds had their best seasons while they played in the ANZ Championship.
Established in 2008, the ANZ Championship was the highest level of professional netball in Australia and New Zealand, and consisted of five netball teams from both Australia and New Zealand. The Firebirds made history as the best team in the ANZ Championship with three wins, appearances in five grand finals, and were the only team in the comptition to win back-to-back years.
As of 2017, the ANZ Championship has effectively been replaced by the ANZ Premiership.
Firebirds & the Suncorp Super Netball League
The ANZ Championship ended in 2017 because New Zealand and Australia chose to start their own local professional netball leagues. The ANZ Premiership replaced the ANZ Championship in New Zealand, and the Suncorp Super Netball League replaced the ANZ Championship in Australia.
Today, the Suncorp Super Netball League consists of the highest professional netball teams in Australia: the Adelaide Thunderbirds, Melbourne Vixens, NSW Swifts, West Coast Fever, GIANTS Netball, Magpies Netball Club, the Sunshine Coast Lightning, and the Queensland Firebirds.
2023 Queensland Firebirds Team Roster
The head coach for the Queensland Firebirds this year is Bec Bulley, and the captain is Kim Ravaillion.
|Lara Dunkley||Wing Attack|
|Gabi Simpson||Wing Defence|
|Mia Stower||Goal Attack|
|Emily Moore||Goal Attack|
|Donnell Wallam||Goal Shooter|
|Ruby Bakewell-Doran||Goal Defence|
|Ashlee Unie||Goal Defence|
|Remi Kamo||Goal Keeper|
|Gretel Bueta||Goal Attack|
Titles, Recognitions & 2023 Player Highlights
- In 2006, the Firebirds made it to their first play-off series in the Commonwealth Bank Trophy league.
- Between 2008 and 2017, the Firebirds were the most successful team in the ANZ Championship.
- In 2011, the Firebirds finished the ANZ Championship season undefeated.
- The Firebirds won the ANZ Championship title in 2011, 2015 and 2016.
- The Firebirds were runner-ups in the ANZ Championship in 2013 and 2014.
- Remi Kamo currently holds the highest number of defensive rebounds at 15.
- Donnell Wallam currently holds the highest number of goals and highest goal percentage with 434 goals, and a goal percentage of 87.85
- Lara Dunkley currently holds the highest number of goal assists at 123 and highest centre pass receives at 161, and also the highest feed with attempts at 151.
- Kim Ravaillion currenlty holds the highest number of pickups at 20.
- Ruby Bakewell-Doran currently holds the higest number of intercepts at 19.
Embracing the Present: Queensland Firebirds in 2023
The Queensland Firebirds, one of Australia’s most successful netball teams, have continued to achieve success in recent years. The Firebirds have undoubtedly been one of the most successful teams in the Suncorp Super Netball League since its inception in 2017. With a talented squad of experienced players and passionate coaching staff, they will be looking to go one better in 2023 and bring the championship home to Queensland.
From Past Glories to Future Aspirations
The Firebirds have a great record of success in the Suncorp Super Netball League. Looking forward, it is no surprise their focus remains on adding to their trophy cabinet waiting patiently in their home venue, the Queensland State Netball Centre. Under the expert guidance of Head Coach Rebecca Bulley, who took the reigns from her predecessor Megan Anderson in 2022, their fast-paced style of play and impressive defensive pressure should no doubt maintain them as one to watch for many years to come.
Fan Engagement and Social Initiatives
The Firebirds are committed to engaging with their passionate fans in a variety of ways, from social media to match day activities. On match days, the Firebirds host a range of interactive experiences, including pre-game entertainment, sideline activities and post-game autograph sessions with players. They also offer exclusive fan experiences such as player meet and greets, behind-the-scenes tours, and the chance to watch training sessions.
The Queensland Firebirds also take an active role in helping to create a positive, healthy, and safe environment for the entire Queensland community. This includes hosting a Queensland Firebirds Community Lunch and Queensland Firebirds Gala Ball. The Community Lunch is an annual event which encourages community involvement by providing a meal and entertainment to those in need. The Gala Ball is an annual event which celebrates the success of the Firebirds and raises money for a range of charities. The Firebirds also host the annual ‘Firebirds in the House’ event to raise money for local charities and community organisations.
The Evolution of Playing Style Over the Years
Initially, the Firebirds relied on the experience and skill of their veteran players to get the job done. This included the likes of Romelda Aiken, Laura Geitz, and Clare McMeniman, who provided the necessary leadership and guidance to younger players. But over time, the Firebirds have moved away from this old-school approach and adopted a more dynamic and modern style of play. They now focus on a faster-paced, more attacking style of netball, with the aim of getting more shots on target. They have also adopted a more tactical approach to their game, using different formations and strategies depending on their opponents.
Memorable Clashes and Rivalries
Few true Australian netball fans can forget the flaming hot rivalry between the Firebirds and the NSW Swifts during the 2008 to 2016 ANZ Championship, which reached new heights in 2016 thanks to a match that was hailed back then as one of the greatest of all time. The Firebirds beat the Swifts 69-67 in sudden-death double overtime in front of a home crowd at Brisbane Entertainment Centre, topping the nail-biting final between the two sides only the previous year that the Firebirds also won. More recently in April 2023, the NSW Swifts snatched victory back from the Firebirds in front of a home crowd at Ken Rosewall Arena.
Training, Coaching, and Team Dynamics
The Firebirds’ training and coaching staff consists of some of the best in the business. The coaches strive to create an environment that is both challenging and supportive, and work hard to ensure players are reaching their full potential. They encourage the players to support each other both on and off the court, helping to foster a sense of team unity and camaraderie. The players are also taught the importance of communication and collaboration to achieve success.
Firebirds’ Youth Development Programs
From providing educational opportunities and financial assistance to those in need, to playing an active role in creating a positive environment for youth development, the Firebirds are dedicated to giving back to the community. The Firebirds are proud to partner with the Queensland Government’s ‘Get Active Queensland’ program, which promotes physical activity and healthy lifestyle choices for children and young adults. Through this initiative, the Firebirds are actively working to help create a healthier and more vibrant Queensland.
Unsung Heroes and Support Staff
The Queensland Firebirds are a fantastic team of netballers – but they don’t just become successful by themselves. From physiotherapists to sports psychologists, dieticians to strength and conditioning coaches, the Firebirds have a team of dedicated professionals who work together behind the scenes to make sure the team have the best position possible to perform well and succeed. Recognition should also be paid to the Firebirds sponsor, Lorna Jane – an athletic apparel retailer who have proudly sponsored the team since 2016.
Conclusion: Queensland Firebirds – Forging a Lasting Legacy
Through their innovative and determined play, the Queensland Firebirds have demonstrated how netball can be a powerful and entertaining sport, setting a new standard for excellence in the world of netball. The team has produced some of the best players in the sport, and their influence extends far beyond the boundaries of Queensland. The Firebirds are an inspiration to aspiring netballers across the country and have created a legacy that will be remembered for years to come.
Queensland Firebirds Today
Unfortunately, the Queensland Firebirds have not had the same success in the Suncorp Super Netball League as they did during their ANZ Championship era. They have not made it to the finals, but they are still showing great athleticism and strong ball handling skills and team comradery on the court.
Will 2023 be their comeback year? We are cheering them on!
How have the Queensland Firebirds performed in the Suncorp Super Netball League?
The Queensland Firebirds have only participated in one year of finals in the Suncorp Super Netball League since its inception in 2017, being knocked out in the minor semi-final of 2018. Prior to this, they played in the ANZ Championship between 2008 and 2016, and were the only team to win back to back ANZ championship titles. The Firebirds were unquestionably the most successful team in this era, playing in five grand finals and winning three premierships.
Who are some standout players in the 2023 Queensland Firebirds roster?
Whilst it goes without saying that veteran players Gretel Tippett, Romelda Aiken, and Gabi Simpson will lead the Firebird charge in 2023, it is new blood Remi Kamo who is considered one to watch. Kamo is praised for her fancy footwork and great read on the ball. With previous experience playing alongside fellow Firebird defender Ruby Bakewell-Doran during their time as part of the Brisbane North Cougars, Remi is truly set to hit the court running.
How does the Queensland Firebirds organization engage with fans?
With such an engaged and passionate fan base, the Firebirds are always looking for new ways to connect and engage with their supporters. One way they interact with fans is via their active online presence, holding regular competitions and giveaways on their website. They also regularly provide fans with unique content such as in-depth player profiles, match previews and reviews, and insider insights into the team’s preparations.