HOMECOMING FOR TAYLA EARLE AS SHE LOOKS FORWARD TO PLAYING AT HOME IN ROTORUA FOR FIRST TIME IN FIVE YEARS
By Megan Wilson
Rotorua Daily Post
8 Apr, 2023
Tayla Earle is playing netball in Rotorua for the first time since she was a Year 13 student in high school tomorrow.
The 22-year-old is in her fifth season with the Northern Mystics, and tomorrow faces the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic at Rotorua’s Energy Events Centre.
She said she was “really excited” to be playing in her hometown this weekend.
“I’ve got quite a lot of family members and friends coming … I think it will be a really special game.”
Tayla’s mother, Amy Earle, said she and Tayla’s father tried to attend all of her games, which she played all over the country.
“For her nan and her poppa, for them to be able to go just close to home and all her friends that are here … I think she should have quite a big support crew this weekend.”
Speaking to the Rotorua Daily Post Weekend, Earle said she started playing netball in Rotorua when she was in Year 6, making her way up to playing representative netball.
At age 14, she was selected to trial for the Aotearoa Māori Secondary Schools team and travelled to Malaysia to play.
“That was a massive opportunity for me.”
When she was 15, she moved to Auckland and went to Saint Kentigern College, where she boarded for three years.
“As soon as I made the move, I started representing Auckland … and I was very fortunate enough to be given a trial for New Zealand Secondary Schools in Year 11.”
Earle made the team for Years 11 to 13.
“I just took on any opportunity that I could to play netball, because I love it.”
Her first year out of high school was her first full season playing for the Northern Mystics.
“I was juggling starting university [and] playing professional full-time netball, but I was loving the challenge, and I was thriving in the environment because I wanted to be better.”
Her ultimate career goals included playing for the Silver Ferns.
She plays in the mid-court, playing either centre, wing attack or wing defence.
Earle is studying sport and exercise science at AUT on Auckland’s North Shore and hoped to graduate at the end of the year.
“I’d love to create an app or something that people can utilise in terms of the gym and health and wellness.”
Asked what she missed about Rotorua, Earle said she missed the people.
“They always say home is where the heart is, and I believe that.”