STATE DUTIES: Rikarra Benjamin defends Shanae Sirriss and the pair has been selected in the under-16 and under-14 Queensland Indigenous teams.
STATE DUTIES: Rikarra Benjamin defends Shanae Sirriss and the pair has been selected in the under-16 and under-14 Queensland Indigenous teams. Nick Kossatch

Gladstone duo's double trouble talents earn state selection

RIKARRA Benjamin and Shanae Sirriss have made Queensland Indigenous Schoolgirls Netball teamhanks to their ability to play defence as well as being capable of shooting goals.

The talented pair recently competed at a national indigenous carnival at Runaway Bay and Rikarra, 16, said to play for the indigenous team will be something special.

"I have been playing netball since I was six years of age and I am trialling for the representative team at the moment as well," she said.

"I am forever training and it will be such a privilege to represent my people as well."

Rikarra, who plays for local club Valleys, looks up to an elite athlete who she hopes to model her game on.

"I'd love to play for the Queensland Firebirds and I really enjoy watching Beryl Friday playing for the Firebirds," Rikarra said.

The athletic and tall Brisbane-born teenager, who moved here four years ago, found out on the last day of the carnival that she made the cut.

"There were only 20 girls selected of about 90," Rikarra said.

Although she is also talented in rugby league, Touch, basketball and volleyball, it seems that netball is where she wants to excel.

Shanae will be wearing the QLD colours for the under-14 side.

"I feel very lucky to be the only Gladstone player to play in the side and it's pretty exciting," she said.

While she enjoys the challenges of preventing the other team from scoring, she prefers to shoot goals.

The dynamic duo has a busy schedule ahead.

They will play in the International Goodwill Carnival in July before heading to Fiji in August as part of the Queensland Indigenous Netball Indigenous Corporation.



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