Former Football Fern Katie Duncan (nee Hoyle) is set to join Onehunga Sports FC as coach of the women’s conference team for the 2018 season.
The 29-year-old, who played at three FIFA Women’s World Cups and three Olympics, retired from international football this year and believes the timing is right to take on a new challenge in the game.
“I love coaching but I didn’t have many opportunities to do it while I was playing,” said Duncan, whose career included stints in Australia, Denmark, England, Germany and Switzerland.
“I’m really excited to join Onehunga Sports FC, especially because I now live close by. Strong clubs help to build strong communities so I hope to make a positive difference in terms of developing the women’s teams and encouraging more girls to play.”
Duncan recently completed a Bachelor of Physical Education and will take up a full-time role as a sports specialist at Stonefields School next year. Duncan brings strong leadership skills having been vice-captain of the Football Ferns for a number of years.
“I’m looking forward to getting to know the core group of players already at Onehunga while also attracting some new recruits so that we end up with a squad that’s well balanced and has a mix of ages. The aim is to have trainings that are fun but challenging and to play good football in games so that we can hopefully challenge for the title,” added Duncan, who played 119 ‘A’ Internationals for New Zealand.
Onehunga Sports FC had a hugely successful 2017 season on the men’s side, with the first team winning both the NRFL Premier League and the national ISPS Handa Chatham Cup.
Meanwhile the women’s conference team, which is the highest women’s team at the club, finished 7th of nine teams in the AFF/NFF Women’s Conference – a competition in which the winner is promoted to the NRFL Women’s Premier League.
General Manager Mark Bailey says the club is delighted to have Duncan come on board.
“As one of the most capped Football Ferns of all time, Katie will be an inspiration not only for the players she coaches but so many others within our club. We’re keen to see our women’s programme progress and have put the right things in place to accommodate more players including strong management, a good club culture as well as excellent fields and facilities,” he said.
Women’s football at Onehunga Sports FC is also well supported through sponsorship from BDC Engineering and C&R Developments.