Mickayela Luke – wife of Rabbitohs hooker and Kiwi international Issac Luke – has arrived in South Africa as part of the Australian Women’s Indoor Netball team as they go in search of World Cup glory in just two days-time.
Mickayela and the Australian team arrived in South Africa today (Thursday) where the tournament – set to be run between the 25th and 31st of May – will take place at Fourways Arena.
Mickayela has previously spoken to Rabbitohs.com.au about what was a shock selection in the World Cup squad.
“It was a bit of a shock to be selected,” admitted the Aussie rep.
“It’s just really exciting, and I feel like I’ve been able to accomplish a personal goal – something for myself. Maybe I can hang up the boots!”
But until that day comes, the Australian’s have a job to do in South Africa. Coach of the Australian team, Georgia Chong, this afternoon said that the team arrived safe and sound after a ‘long but steady flight’, with all the Australian girls fast settling into their new surroundings.
“Later today we have a training session so it will be great to see the team on the court and see them come together, and then a training game to give the ladies a chance to click and figure each other out on the court,” said Georgia.
For proud husband Issac, the tables have now turned, with the Rabbitohs hooker citing that his Australian international wife felt strange about leaving the family behind.
“She said it feels different now that she’s the one leaving – it’s usually me,” said Luke smiling.
“But look I’ve always been a fan of my wife’s netball. Ever since I met her she’s been a great athlete – we played a bit of one on one a while back and we both jumped up for the ball and I came off second best. It was pretty painful.
“She’s going to hold her own over there and she’s going to do us proud – if she can put up with me, she’s doing alright!”
With both halves of the Luke marriage playing for opposing nations, there was naturally plenty of stick flying around the Luke household in the lead-up to the tournament according to the cheeky Issac.
“All I told her is she can’t sing the National Anthem,” laughed Issac.
“You know me – I’m a hard-core Kiwi and always will be, so I give her heaps at home. She knows I don’t mean it. I’m really proud of her.”
The smack-talk was all in good fun though – even if there is a desire from husband Luke for his wife to be playing in black and white.
“He’s trying to be as supportive and happy as he can,” laughed Mickayela.
“I guess he wishes it was New Zealand, but I know he’s proud.”
The Rabbitohs Family would like to congratulate Mickayela on her selection and wish her and her Australian teammates all the very best in the upcoming World Cup Tournament.
The Australian team to contest the World Cup is:
Kacey Mazzini (WA)
Pauline Decoster (QLD)
Belynda Loveday (NSW)
Jo Beercroft (WA)
Ash Scott (NSW)
Kelly Gibson (QLD)
Laura Carter (NSW)
Mickayela Luke (NSW)
Georgia Chong (Coach - NSW)
David Chong (Manager - NSW)