MAGPIES SWOOP ON BELL

Tiarne Swersky - June 30, 2017

One of the game’s most decorated goalers will line up in Black and White next season, with free agent Erin Bell joining Magpies Netball ahead of its 2018 campaign.

After eight seasons with the Thunderbirds – including the past two as the club’s captain – Bell will bring a wealth of experience to the club.

As one of the best long-range shooters in the league, the 30-year-old will bolster the Magpies’ attacking third next season.

Originally from Sydney, Bell started her career with the New South Wales Swifts before joining the Thunderbirds in 2010.

After successful stints at both clubs, Bell became the first player in the now-defunct ANZ Championship to win three premierships.

She also boasts two Netball World Cup gold medals with the Australian Diamonds, after making her international debut in 2011.

Bell will re-join former teammate Sharni Layton at Collingwood, having played with the defender at the Adelaide franchise during 2010-13.

She’ll be met with another familiar face in Magpies Head Coach Kristy Keppich-Birrell, who was part of the coaching panel at the Thunderbirds in 2016.

“We are excited to welcome Erin into the Magpies nest,” Keppich-Birrell said.    

“Erin’s passion for the game and silky skills will add yet another level of excitement to our game.

“She brings with her an invaluable knowledge of the game and we look forward to seeing Caitlin, Alice and Shae build great combinations with her in the 2018 season.”

Bell will replace goaler Cody Lange in the Magpies’ squad.

The 22-year-old has been sidelined after rupturing her anterior cruciate ligament in May - her second serious knee injury in 12 months.

Collingwood GM of Netball Jennifer McIntyre credited Lange for her dedication and resilience throughout the season.

“Cody has been a really valuable member of the team who made a real impact when she came back from her first knee injury.”

“Her presence was known in her approach to training and support for the team.

“’Codes’ will have full access to the club’s facilities and doctors to ensure her rehab is a smooth and successful one,” McIntyre said.