New Sponsor for the Tactix!

The Canterbury Tactix have secured a new sponsor for their ANZ Championship campaign, today unveiling national yoghurt brand EasiYo in a new naming rights deal.


EasiYo, a subsidiary of Westland Milk Products, is furthering its supporting sponsorship role of last season.


Pete Smith, chief executive of Canterbury Netball, said he was delighted at the sponsorship.


"It's fantastic to be associated with such an iconic New Zealand brand and with people genuinely committed to supporting this region. The EasiYo brand and product aligns extremely well with our focus on health and well-being through sport.


"Despite a challenging sponsorship environment in Christchurch, we have had huge support from many companies, who are willing to help despite the obvious constraints that their own businesses are under.


"We know that Canterbury Netball has widespread appeal among women, from the very young through to those who have retired. The netball family in this region is huge, progressive and diverse. A big part of our focus this year is to reconnect with our stakeholders through our centres."


Smith said the new EasiYo Tactix uniform reflected this wider approach, featuring the 13 colours of the centres, which make up Canterbury Netball.


EasiYo chief executive Paul O'Brien said working with netball was an ideal fit for the well-known yoghurt brand.


"EasiYo is a delicious, healthy product popular with families in New Zealand and around the world. As a brand, we like to be involved with energetic and enthusiastic organisations that share our values and  encourage people to reach their potential."


This season's new-look EasiYo Tactix comprise a mix of youth and experience, including UK imports Joanne Harten and Stacey Francis. The pair comes with fine pedigree - Harten, at goal shoot/goal attack, has 35 caps for England and defender Francis 20.


Coach Leigh Gibbs said the team was working hard on its pre-season training for the 2012 ANZ Championship.


"I'm really pleased with the group. There's great commitment, intensity and excitement. One of our measures is keeping that excitement going. The ANZ  Championship is the toughest netball competition in the world  so maintaining the excitement in the team throughout will be important."


"We need to make sure we are a 'never say die' team."


Gibbs said she was thrilled with the way Harten and Francis had adapted to life in Christchurch and working with the EasiYo Tactix.


"They bring a wonderful open-mindedness and a desire to develop and grow."


The team faces its first challenge when it meets the West Coast Fever in Perth on April 2, in the opening round of the 2012 ANZ Championship followed by an at home game against the NSW Swifts on April 9.


The team is: Maree Bowden, Anna Thompson, Jo Harten, Stacey Francis, Kiley Hikawai, Bessie Manu, Ellen Halpenny, Keshia Grant, Sophia Fenwick, Anna Galvan, Finau Pulu, Joanna Trip. Assistant coach Julie Seymour, manager Denise Leggat.