The ANZ Premiership’s most accurate shooter is heading to the Mainland, with the Trident Homes Tactix confirming the signing of Aliyah Dunn for their 2023 campaign.
Dunn, who has regularly delivered the best radar over the past four years and helped guide the Pulse to a record third title this month, will team up with Te Paea Selby-Rickit and Hannah Glen in the Tactix shooting circle for next year’s Premiership.
The chance to play alongside Selby-Rickit and step outside of her comfort zone saw Dunn approach the Tactix with a move south in mind.
“I’ve been with the Pulse for five seasons now, so I was looking for a change of environment and I’ve heard nothing but good things about what the Tactix are doing down in Christchurch,” she said.
“I’m really excited to be playing with Teeps (Selby-Rickit) and Kimi (Poi) in that attack end and just looking forward to seeing what I can do with my game. The challenge is always there to improve and to be able to try that with a different team is really exciting.
“It’s hard to leave a team like the Pulse who I’ve been with for a long time and obviously had some success, and I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had up there, but it felt like the right time to make a change and step out of my comfort zone.”
It will also be a chance for Dunn to be closer to home – the last two Covid-impacted seasons meaning it has not been easy to return to her home of Invercargill to catch up with family.
“The last two years have been tough so it will be nice to be that little bit closer to family and still focus on netball.”
Dunn, who comes from a basketball background, will join the Tactix for pre-season training in November.
Tactix coach Marianne Delaney-Hoshek said she was delighted to welcome Dunn into the Tactix family and excited about the versatility of the shooting circle heading into the 2023 campaign.
“With those three shooters, there’s a lot of different ways we can play which is what I’m looking forward to,” she said.
Dunn is well known for her accuracy and shooting volume along with an unflappable temperament and netball nous well beyond her 22-years.
“But I think she’s quite smart in the way she moves as well and is always working with the other shooter which is another strength to her game,” Delaney-Hoshek said. “She’s just really calm under pressure, and you can’t argue with those shooting stats.
“With Hannah and Aliyah both still really young, it’s exciting to think about the future of the Tactix shooting circle.”
Dunn grew up in Invercargill and it wasn’t until she attended Verdon College that she started to turn heads. The 1.90m shooter was a replacement player for the Steel in 2017 before heading north to the Pulse a year later where she has played five seasons and won three ANZ Premiership titles.
Her selection into the NZU21 team in 2017 prompted her to shift to Wellington to play alongside some of her national age-group team-mates and she has been with the Pulse side since.
She was a member of the World Youth Cup winning NZU21 team (2017) and made her Silver Ferns debut in 2018, as a teenager, while also being a part of the FAST5 Ferns which won the World Series the same year.
Tactix 2023 signings – shooting circle: Aliyah Dunn, Hannah Glen, Te Paea Selby-Rickit.