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Price is right for Magic's trans-Tasman title defence

Published: 7:39PM Thursday January 10, 2013 Source: ONE Sport

The face may seem unfamiliar, but the name definitely rings a bell.

Celebrating her 17th birthday today, Jamie-Lee Price was among the newcomers reporting for pre-season training with the Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic this week, as they begin the build-up torwards their trans-Tasman title defence.

Price's father is rugby league legend, turned self-confessed cab driver for his daughter, Steve Price.

"I think she's got some really good bones," says Magic coach Noeline Taurua. "I'm looking forward to seeing how she progresses week by week, with hopefully the ultimate of getting her out on court this year."

The defender, still at high school, is learning from some of the best. Through the team's "buddy" system, she's been paired with newly married Silver Ferns captain Casey Kopua, formerly Williams.

"You text them, you just look after them," laughs Kopu. "You know, she's got to look after me too.

"So it's just to have someone you can connect with during the training and stuff like that."

Price will be the youngest player in the trans-Tasman championship and team-mate Irene van Dyk - 23 years her senior - is the oldest.

"It's fantastic to have the different levels, different experiences and different ages," says Taurua. "With this group of girls, everybody's open to what people can bring.

"That uniqueness is a positive for us and it adds a bit of spice."

It remains to be seen if that spice can help create another winning recipe.