LEEDS young gun Brie Grierson is raring to go and looking to establish herself as a Yorkshire Jets first team player ahead of the start of the new netball Super League season.
Grierson, 17, has always achieved things a lot quicker than the norm, having represented England under-17s aged only 14, and will already be embarking on her second season as a Jets player.
No longer seeing herself as the new kid on the block, Grierson is ready to make a big impression. She said: “Last season I was getting court time here and there and I was like the young one, the one coming in. Whereas this season I’m hoping to be a set member of the squad and get more court time. When I do get the opportunity I will hopefully show I do deserve to be there.
“Last season was a really good learning experience and showed me that no competition I’ve played in is like Super League. It was a great step up and I really enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to this season even more now.”
Yorkshire endured a somewhat disappointing campaign in 2014, finishing seventh in the eight-team competition. Goal-shooter Grierson is confident a tough pre-season will help stand the team in good stead to improve on last year.
“Pre-season was really hard, that’s the first step into the season,” she said.
“Now we have more of a set team it is more tactical.
“Over Christmas we had a break but we still had certain programmes and conditioning sessions so we came back really fit and ready to go. As a team we definitely want to make play-offs, that is the main target.”
With the challenge of competing as a top level sportswoman not enough, Grierson couples her training with her A-level studies at Harrogate Ladies College.
Studying maths, biology and PE, she is in her final year and hopes to go to a university in Leeds next year to study zoology or animal biology.
She said: “That’s another passion of mine. It can be very difficult to fit everything in.
“I don’t have the typical lifestyle of a 17-year-old.
“Organisation is key, I’ve been doing it all for quite a while now so I’m used to having all that constantly going.
“If I’m not training I’m doing work and if I’m not working I’m training.
“We train 17 hours minimum a week. It is very tough and if I get given a piece of work I know I have to do it straight away because something will come up or some training will happen.
“Netball is the reason I get up on a morning, I absolutely love it so I’d go through anything just to play it.”
Yorkshire will play their matches in Leeds, Hull, Huddersfield and Sheffield this season. Their campaign begins on January 30 against Loughborough Lightning at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield.
The first game to be played in Leeds is a mouth-watering War of the Roses clash against last year’s champions Manchester Thunder at Leeds Beckett University on February 13. Leeds born and bred, Grierson admits it’s a privilege to represent her home county, although she does have to help some of her teammates with the accent from time to time.
She said: “I love it. We do have a few from down south and some imports from Australia, New Zealand and Grenada so to be a Yorkshire lass representing Yorkshire is even better than playing for just any Super League team.
“It’s your home town and you want to do them proud.
“A lot of the girls don’t really understand the slang up here so I’m trying to teach them bits and pieces. I’m having to work on my Australian accent now as well, I’ve got g’day down but that’s it!”