Harlow’s golden girl Jo Harten visits Jerounds Primary

Education: Primary / Sun 18th Nov 2018 at 04:44pm

By Callum Hibberd

HARLOW’S golden girl, Jo Harten visited the school of her former coach and brought along her gold medal to show the pupils.

Jo now plays in Sydney but is back in the UK during the close season.

Jo Harten won Gold at the Commonwealth Games Netball Final in a dramatic last gasp win against favourites Australia.

Jo went to Jerounds Primary Academy where she was met by Carol Bull, coach of Tegate Netball Club and PE advisor the Pynest Road school.

After speaking to the pupils at assembly, where she stressed the importance of team sports and fun, Jo gave our YH reporter ten minutes of her time to talk about her life in netball.

1. At what age did you start playing Netball and what first got you into it?

Jo: I started playing at six years of age informally, I watched my mum at the old Harlow sports centre and thought it looked fun.

2. At St.Marks, what was the netball team like?

Jo: It was very player driven. They competed in the West Essex schools league, with games on Wednesdays.

We had a good group of versatile sportspeople. Seven of us stuck with netball from year 7-11. We still keep in touch and are doing well sport-wise.

3. When you were at Tegate, how often did you train, was the club serious about youth netball or was it more for learning/keeping fit?

Jo: Bit of both, you could go to play netball seriously but also just for fun/keep fit

Carol Bull helped you to do both. She was a good scout but also had an eye for those that just wanted to train/play netball for social and fitness reasons. They came second in a national club tournament at Under 16.

4. You were coached by Carol, and she built Tegate up from nothing, so you’ve known her from a young age. what’s she like as a coach, a teacher and a friend?

Jo: Everyone wants to know her, she is one of the most dedicated people. Even when she went through personal struggles she still kept the club alive and looked after other people. She still to this day keeps Tegate a family club, and rightfully gets support from everyone

Q5. Commonwealth games aside, what’s been your proudest moment in netball or best achievement?

Jo: My first cap in 2007. I was very proud

Any time you beat Australia as they’re the number one national side in the world

Q6. What would be your best piece of advice for young netballers, especially those who are aiming to become a professional?

Jo: Play in older age groups if you can.

Have fun with a group of friends and keep it together, as the enjoyment can motivate you more and the chemistry helps on court.

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