Deanna Smith, Alice Kunek, Hannah Zavecz, Ellie Manou


Gemma Kerr, Brooke Nisi, Hayley Moffatt, Rebekah O’Donnell, Jordyn O’Shea, Erica McMeniman


Emily van Poppell, Chantella Perera, Eva Afeaki


The Lady Cobras can look forward to a season of contrasts in 2011: four of their first six games are at home, followed by four away, then four at home, then six of the last ten on the road. The calibre of the opposition sides they come up against also caries significantly: only one of their opening six games are against finalists from last year, but then six of eight games between rounds 9 and 15 are against 2010 finalists.


The Lady Cobras have recruited two ready-made and proven WNBL players in Chantella Perara and Eva Afeaki, and their respective style of play should hopefully compliment each other. Kilsyth have also maintained a good degree of stability with the re-signing of players such as Kerr, McMeniman, Nisi and Moffatt, while Rebekah O’Donnell is another promising player who made it to the D-League All-Star team last year. Finally, keeping Cheryl Chambers as head coach is another positive – she was announced as the Gems head coach in the off season and is surely in the best half–dozen coaches in the competition.


As good as the new recruits are, the Lady Cobras will struggle to fill the gap left by their departing players. 2010 All-Star Deanna Smith, 2010 Australian Youth Player Ellie Manou, and current WNBL Championship players Alice Kunek and Hannah Zavecz – that quartet would form a significant and formidable outfit in any team when fully healthy.

The Franchise:

Eva Afeaki. She had an injury-interrupted WNBL season, but at her best, she has the talent to destroy opposition teams in the paint. As recently as the 2008/09 WNBL season, Afeaki put up 15.6 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game – if she can reproduce that form in the SEABL competition, Kilsyth will trouble more than a fair share of opposition teams.

Needs to step up:

A lot of pressure will be heaped upon the new recruit Chantella Perera. Part of an underperforming Dandenong outfit in the WNBL this season, Perera did however demonstrate at times that she had what it takes to cut it at that level with several all-round games against quality opposition. But in the last half of the season, her form fluctuated and her minutes diminished. Hopefully with more opportunities at the Lady Cobras, she can recapture her best form and respond to any pressure of being a restricted player recruit.

Watch out for…

The 2010 D-League All-Star Rebekah O’Donnell. The centre has an all-round game and averaged 11.8 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.1 assist last year in the development league. Moreover, she has the athleticism and poise to take her game up to the senior level.

Predicted Finish:

11 wins, 13 losses

7th-10th position