Sport Netball Laura Geitz retires from international netball

Laura Geitz retires from international netball

Australia's Laura Geitz has retired from international netball to concentrate on family life. Photo: AAP
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Two-time world champion netballer Laura Geitz has announced her retirement from international netball to focus on family life and her season with the Queensland Firebirds.

The 30-year-old, who has captained the Queensland Firebirds and the Australian Diamonds, made the announcement in Ipswich this morning.

“After 10 amazing and incredible years I’ve reached a very comfortable decision that I am calling it a day and announcing my international retirement, I will no longer represent the Diamonds,” she said.

“I feel very, very grateful for the last 10 years and the success I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of with the Australian Netball Diamonds, but that’s only been some of my journey.

“The other part has been the amazing friendships, the experiences and the foundation that this wonderful sport of netball has given me.

“As a shy little country girl I’ve learnt to grow and evolve a lot through this sport and that’s something I’ll be forever in debt for.”

Geitz made her international debut with the Diamonds in 2008 and was part of the team that won the 2011 Netball World Cup.

The Queenslander played 71 times for the national team, and was appointed captain in 2013.

Considered one of the sport’s greatest defenders, Geitz also stepped up to captain the Queensland Firebirds in 2011 after Lauren Nourse suffered a season-ending ACL injury.

Geitz led Australia to its last world championship crown in 2015 and captained the Diamonds to their 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medal victory.

In 2016, Geitz stepped away from the sport after the birth of her first child Barney with husband Mark Gilbride.

She made her return this year after playing with the Diamonds in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, where the team won silver.

Geitz said she knew playing the Commonwealth Games would be her last tournament with the team.

“I definitely have known for some time I’ve been coming to the end of my career,” she said.

“I knew after giving birth to Barney in 2017 that I wasn’t done with the game and there was desire in me to represent Australia again at a Commonwealth Games, and in particular one at home.

“But I never had the desire to go on past that moment and that was a decision I had kind of already made back in 2015 at the world championships back in Sydney.

“I did know when I walked off the court [after the Commonwealth Games final] that was probably the last time I would wear the green and gold.”

She said she can’t pick just one career highlight.

“I’ve been asked that question a lot in my career and Commonwealth golds and world championships and the opportunity to lead the Diamonds as captain with an incredible group of girls have all been just amazing highlights for me,” Geitz said.