11 Oct 2014

Sport: Fiji Pearls coach has firm plans for future

7:03 pm on 11 October 2014

The new Fiji netball coach, Kate Carpenter, believes a change in playing style could help her team close the gap on the world's elite nations.

Fiji are currently ranked seventh in the world but, despite a five-year unbeaten run against their Pacific rivals, have struggled to compete when facing teams above them on the standings.

Just getting a match against the top tier is a challenge, with Malawi pulling out of a planned two-test series against the Pearls in November.

Former coach Julie Hoornweg introduced some changes to Fiji's game-plan earlier this year and Carpenter says she also has some ideas on the way forward.

"We perhaps need to make a few adjustments in our playing style, to meet the demands now of the top teams but also to have a program that's not just preparing for an event - that is ongoing and we've got athletes committed to that program, but we've also got [to] build the talent and the pool of athletes, and at the age group levels."

Kate Carpenter says if Fijian netball is strong locally and domestically then they will be strong internationally as well.