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Meet Rudi Ellis. She's a squad member of the Melbourne Vixens and aspiring to make her debut for this prestigious team who play in the highest level of netball in Australia, the Suncorp Super Netball League. We spoke to Rudi about how she's planning to make that dream a reality, and what obstacles she's had to overcome to get to where she is today.
How long have you been playing netball for, and what motivates you to keep competing?
I have been playing netball since I was ten years old, which has been 11 years now! What motivates me to keep competing is the feeling of satisfaction when I give 100% effort towards my goals. In pushing my body to its limits and challenging myself with new skills, I always feel a sense of satisfaction after a tough session. However, I love the girls and appreciate the team aspect of netball, and they keep me motivated to continue competing.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
The highlight of my career would have to be winning the Australian Netball League grand final this year. The ANL is the feeder competition for the Suncorp Super Netball (SSN), and the league features many current and past SSN players. The grand final was extremely close, where we only won by one goal! The feeling of winning the premiership with some of my best friends is something I’ll never forget.
What are your short and long term goals for your career?
A short term goal of mine is to be elevated from squad member to a player in the starting ten at the Melbourne Vixens. My long term goal is to play for the Australian Diamonds one day!
What makes a good teammate in netball?
A good teammate is someone who will push you to be your best on and off-court. That means getting you to lift a little heavier in the gym, or making sure you stay in the ice bath for the full amount of time to ensure proper recovery. Having someone you can talk to as a friend about your life creates a comradery amongst the team, and this sense of friendship means that we will always have each others back, no matter what.
Has there been a time in your career where you have considered giving up? How did you overcome these thoughts?
There have been times when I have had serious doubts about my netball career. I had a tough year in Sydney, where I was required to travel 2.5 hours to training and back, I wasn’t getting much court time, and my attitude towards this wasn’t great. Instead of giving up, I decided that I wanted it more, and I worked on my resilience on and off the court, which helped shape who I am today. I think having obstacles along the way in your sporting career only makes you stronger as an athlete and individual.
What is your favourite quote?
“You can’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the further you get” - Michael Phelps.
Do you have three tips you could give to help aspiring athletes be their best?
1. No matter how tough a session, skill or drill may seem, by putting in 100% effort, you will reap the rewards on and off the court.
2. Ask questions. If you don’t understand something, have the confidence to ask your coach or teammates so that you can be your best!
3. Obstacles such as poor performance, missing out on team selection and injury, can lead to a negative outlook on how you see yourself as an athlete and person. Use these obstacles as motivation to give you drive and hunger to want more from yourself, which will ultimately make you a better athlete.