By Keziah (19S05A), Captain
Raffles Netballers— The ones you can hear screaming miles away in the toilets during our ice baths after matches. The ones who randomly greet each other along the corridors, in the canteen and even in the lecture theaters with bear hugs and loud screams, as if the last time we had seen each other was 10 years ago when in reality, it was probably just the previous day. While many of our peers often question our affectionate greetings in public, it is through these small actions that we encourage each other and gain that small amount of energy needed to push through school after a tiring training the day before.
Consisting of just 15 members in total from J1 and J2, we are probably one of the smallest sports CCAs in RI. However, we view being small in numbers as a strength, as we pride ourselves on being small but strong. We form great bonds through going out for team lunches, dinners or even on outings, as well as through our achievements. Being in a small CCA enables us to form an environment like that of a second home, where we treat each other as family.
This pushes us to work hard for the team. In 2018, we placed 2nd in Nationals, and 1st and 2nd place in the Daisy Tan Netball Carnival. Moreover, we have 6 National Under 19s representatives and 1 National Under 21s representatives in our team.
Of course, these achievements do not come without hard work and obstacles.
During season, we train 3 times a week with Strength and Conditioning (SnC) on Wednesdays from 2.30pm-4.30pm and Court Trainings on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5.30pm-8.30pm. Our SnC trainings consist of exercises taught by our SnC coach- Coach Nithiya (aka Coachie) that vary from lifting in the gym, to sprints on the track, and agility, fitness and strengthening through circuit training in the cage. Our court trainings are when our netball Coach, Mr Goh (aka Jiaolian) comes down to work with us on our court play and where we do more ball drills to strengthen our court skills such as passing accuracy and footwork. This is also the time where we smoothen our court play and come together to play as a team.
Given the high intensity and demand of trainings especially during season, it is common for many of us to struggle surviving every set of exercise or through a 3 hour court training. This often results in a lack of focus and continuous mistakes being made. However, this is the time where we find ourselves depending on and motivating each other the most. Be it coming up with unique handshakes, high fives, a pat on the back or shouts of encouragement and assurance, we never fail to boost each other’s morales and remind each other not to give up, with the mindset of “The tougher it is now, the easier it is on court”. Our CCA is really one that pushes you beyond what you may think your limit is and encourages the growth player both in terms of skills and character.
Apart from trainings, we have numerous fun activities that we organise and participate in each year that everyone can look forward to. Once every two years, Raffles netballers get a chance to travel to Sydney for a training camp. By playing against one of the best in the world, we will be able to push ourselves to even greater levels. Moreover, we were able to forge many friendships with the people we met during matches and dinner sessions and also got a chance to experience another culture by visiting many iconic locations.
Later in the year, we organised the Gryphon Recall 2018 where we invited alumni to come back and relive their JC memories over a morning filled with games such as dodgeball and street netball. Another event was the Y6 farewell where we organised a themed farewell for our seniors. In addition to all these, we also have many other activities such as team dinners and day camps.
So what kind of person will thrive in our CCA? Here is a checklist of attributes that will ensure you will be able to grow both in terms of skill and character if you are looking to join Raffles Netball:
❏ A person who is willing to put in 101% in everything they do
❏ Having commitment to the team
❏ Willing to take in advice and be vocal with your views
❏ Knowing when to have fun and when to be serious
❏ Knowing how to give/take constructive criticism
❏ Accountability for each training session
Trust us, you will not regret your decision of joining the Raffles Netball family!!