Jamaican shooting sensation Jhaniele Fowler has signed a two-year contract with the Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel.

Silver Fern shooter Jodi Brown spearheads a nucleus of experienced signings announced by the Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel today.

Three of New Zealand netball’s brightest young stars head to the World Youth Championships in Scotland tomorrow with their ANZ Championship futures secure.

The Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel has bolstered its defensive ranks by signing towering Magic defender Erena Mikaere.

Five teams will represent the Netball South Zone at various New Zealand Age Group Championships this month.

The New Zealand U19/U23 Age Group Championships start on Monday at Wellington's ASB Sports Arena while the U17 event will be staged in Hastings the following week.

Boasting seven Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel players in its ranks, the Netball South Under-23 team will prove a formidable opponent.

Netball South today named a 16-strong squad to contest the inaugural national under-23 competition - a Netball New Zealand initiative designed to bridge the gap to the elite ANZ Championship and act as a feeder competition for the five franchise teams like the Steel.

Promising young netballers from throughout the southern region will have the edge over their opponents this season following a three-day camp in Cromwell.

The Netball South initiative features sessions with a raft of experts, including former Silver Ferns captain Belinda Colling and Steel players Stacey Peeters, Gina Crampton and Kate Shearer.

Experienced netballer Olivia Bates knows all about scoring goals, but her latest is off the court.

The dynamic 22-year-old has just landed her dream job as a Netball South development officer in Central Otago and is focused on developing the sport in the region.
"It will be great to see the sport really grow in this area and I'm looking forward to playing a part in that," Bates said.