Diamonds star shines at NRL tipping
Paige Hadley has played a big part in getting Australia to the 2015 Netball World Cup final but has still been focussed enough on the NRL Telstra Premiership to maintain her lead in the NRL.com tipping comp.
Through 22 rounds of the season, the Diamonds mid-court star is out in front of the likes of former NRL coach Matt Elliott, Fox Sports commentator Andrew Voss, The Footy Show host Erin Molan and the entire NRL.com team.
Coming from a sporty family in western Sydney the 22-year-old has been taking her footy tipping seriously, with some occasional input from her father.
"My dad is a Parramatta Eels supporter and does enjoy his Friday Night Footy," Hadley told NRL.com.
"He used to be down there all the time when I was growing up. Obviously he still supports them, even though they're not doing the greatest this season."
The former under-17, under-19 and under-21 NSW Netball representative didn't get to many NRL games herself while growing up as she was always down at the netball courts.
"I started playing when I was seven. My friend from school started playing so I decided to play as well," she said.
"I made my first NSW team when I was 17 and I really enjoyed representing my state. That was when I thought 'this is where I want to be'.
"It wasn't until 2013 that I thought I could actually make the Australian team."
Hadley was indeed selected in her first Australian Diamonds side in October of 2013 and was named Most Valuable Player in just her second appearance for the national team. However in early 2014 she ruptured her left anterior cruciate ligament, putting her out of the game for an extended period.
Following a successful comeback season with the NSW Swifts, Hadley was selected in the Diamonds squad for the 2015 Netball World Cup in Sydney.
"It means the absolute world to represent my country. To come back from several months of rehab, to be here now is a dream come true," she said.
"We've wanted to build every game. We had a loss to New Zealand early in the tournament, we knew it was going to be tough and now we need to bounce back.
"We've been building nicely each game and trying to stick to our standards to get the job done."
When it comes to tipping, Hadley is also getting the job done against more seasoned NRL "experts".
"At the start of the season I was thinking that I just didn't want to come last. I hate losing. Now I'm on top and there are only a few rounds to go, so I've got to keep it up," she said.
"Now I'm in the lead I'm feeling a lot more pressure to keep performing. I think I've had a bit of luck to get there.
"I sometimes ask dad for tipping advice but when he gets it wrong we get into an argument. I just go with my heart but dad says 'think about what you're doing'.
"I'll get upset with him for giving me the wrong advice and then he'll say 'well do it yourself then!'
"I see who wins and loses the previous week and I just go off that."
After the World Cup the Diamonds have a four-Test Constellation Cup series against New Zealand in October and a Test series in England in January.
"Fingers crossed there is more Australian netball to come for me, but I'll just take it as it comes," Hadley said.
We're tipping there will be plenty more Diamonds success for Paige Hadley.