Warrnambool Mermaids assistant coach Nicole Gynes out to make mark in 2017

TRIPLE THREAT: Warrnambool's Tanna Blackney-Noter (youth league), Brock Carter (division one) and Renee Tuck (division two). Picture: Amy Paton

TRIPLE THREAT: Warrnambool's Tanna Blackney-Noter (youth league), Brock Carter (division one) and Renee Tuck (division two). Picture: Amy Paton

WARRNAMBOOL Mermaids’ next generation won’t have to look far for advice in 2017.

Assistant coach Nicole Gynes wants to help fast-track their development.

The former WNBL guard, who is pregnant with her second child, will work alongside coach Louise Brown as the Mermaids navigate their return to Big V ranks, starting on Saturday night against Melbourne University Black.

She had planned to play but will now lead from the sidelines.

“I will help Louise out at trainings and games and go to as many away trips as possible, depending on where (Seahawk husband) Alex is playing and juggling (son) Ollie and babysitters,” Gynes said.

“We are over the moon (with the pregnancy news) and couldn’t be more excited and excited for Ollie to be a big brother.”

Gynes said the Mermaids, who will play division two in their return season, had assembled a strong squad.

“There are a lot of unknowns at the moment like what the opposition will be like or what the standard will be like in the division we’re playing in,” she said.

“But it is about us being back in the competition and having something young girls can strive to play in and develop their basketball.”

Gynes said the Mermaids’ revival was an ideal result for the Warrnambool basketball community.

She said she wanted players to build fond memories like she collected playing for her home club before WNBL commitments.

“Watching the Seahawks do well and go to the grand final (last year) and seeing a sellout crowd brought back memories and at the same time I thought ‘what a shame there’s no women’s team’,” Gynes said.

Warrnambool will start its season with a triple-header at the Arc with youth league to tip off at 4pm, women’s division two at 6pm and men’s division one – the defending champions – at 8pm.

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