The Regional Academy Championships have previously been played annually at Netball SA Stadium during the October School Holidays.
In 2017 the format will be changing to include the newly merged Lower North and Mt Lofty Academies (newly named Lower Hills Regional Academy) and for the first time will include the Netball SA Adelaide Metropolitan Netball Academy.
The new name for the event will now be the Netball SA Mellor Olsson Academy Games.
All athletes will also, for the first time, be able to be involved with potentially up to 40 athletes from the eight Regional Academies and the one Metropolitan Academy.
17U State Team selections will also be conducted during the Academy Games. Players selected through this process will be invited to the second weekend of State trials in Adelaide.
The new format for the Academies will see athletes training in a squad environment which replaces the age categories.
After consultation and discussion with the Regional Academy Head Coaches and Program Managers at the Regional Academy meeting conducted on Wednesday 5 October 2016 the following age requirements to be included in an Academy are:
All Netball SA Regional and Metropolitan Netball Academies will be for players 14-16yrs as per the National curriculum.
To be eligible to trial for a regional or metropolitan Netball Academy for the 2017 intake, players must turn 14 years old by 30 September 2017. i.e. players must be minimum 14 years old on 30 September 2017.
For the same intake in 2017, players cannot turn 17 years of age prior to 1 November 2017 i.e. they must still be 16 years old on 31 October 2017
The Mellor Olsson Academy Games provide an opportunity for the selected players to put into practice the skills that they have learnt at monthly training.
An important part of the player development pathway, the Mellor Olsson Academy Games is the culmination of dedicated hard work not just from the players but also the coaches and umpires that are involved.