Falcon Carly Cooke rightfully awarded player of year title



VICTORIOUS Yaralla Dynamic Falcons player Carly Cooke capped off a sensational season by being named Gladstone Netball Association senior player of the year on Tuesday night.

Still celebrating after having played a major role in helping Falcons to a gripping two-point victory over Valley Stars in the first division final, the player of the year award came as a shock to Cooke.

'It was a bit of a surprise,' Cooke said. 'I was a having a conversation when my name got mentioned and someone had to give me a tap on the back.

'This year was one of my best ... I'm still on a high.'

Cooke was instrumental in Falcons' win on Tuesday night, her accurate passing and ability to read the game coming to the fore in a fast-paced encounter.

It is the type of form which has had her club and representative coach Tracey Davis singing Cooke's praises this year.

For her part, Cooke believed she could have played better in the decider but that gives an indication of how hard a marker she is. Cooke's player of the year award was her first such GNA honour although she boasts a swag of club trophies having played with the Yaralla outfit since first stepping on to the court as an eight-year-old in 1993.

A much-decorated junior player, Cooke was a regular Gladstone, Central Queensland and Port Curtis representative from the age of 13 and, at 14, was the youngest member of the Queensland under-21 indigenous team.

Now aged 20, Cooke has revelled in the amount of high class netball she has played this year as a member of the Gladstone and Capricorn Red Claws representative outfit.

'It's been a really good experience,' she said. 'It's very hard netball but then when you come back here, you're on fire.'

Cooke said she was eagerly awaiting the chance to defend Falcons' title next year.



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