Aussie netball is cut-throat: Alexander

Ex-Diamonds mentor Lisa Alexander says the new coach must take the job for the right reasons.
Ex-Diamonds mentor Lisa Alexander says the new coach must take the job for the right reasons.

Outgoing Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander says there is a cut-throat nature to Australian netball after Netball Australia decision not to renew her contract.

Alexander, who has won 83 out of 102 Tests and the 2015 World Cup with the Diamonds, will leave the role after over eight years.

The Melbourne native will take charge of the Diamonds for the last time for the bushfire relief charity match in Sydney on March 1, and has been open about her disappointment over her departure.

Alexander says she would have liked to have continued in the role, but concedes losing benchmark matches has contributed to her departure.

The Diamonds lost their world title to New Zealand by a goal last July, although have still maintained their No.1 ranking.

"I think really we've performed extremely well," she told RSN.

"We're still No.1 in the world. What we haven't done is win and close out those benchmark events. But that's the cut-throat nature of Australian netball.

"We've traditionally had a change in our coaching structure after two cycles. I think the board made the decision around that as well."

Netball Australia will commence the search for Alexander's successor next month, with Vixens head coach Simone McKinnis considered one of the front-runners.

Alexander, who became the first non-Diamond to coach the team when she took the reins in 2011, says her replacement must take the job for the right reasons.

"I think they need the person that's got the energy and passion for the job. I think if you're going to do the job just because you want to serve your ego and you want to achieve a certain career highlight, you're not in it for the right reasons.

"I think if you're into the reasons of improving the athletes and also continuing to have Australia number one, and working with a really big team of people, then you've got the right skills to go on with the job.

"It's going to be very important for the person who comes into the job, they haven't got a lot of control over a lot of things, so they have to work with the system. That means working with our Super Netball coaches as well on developing those athletes."

Australian Associated Press