Bassett’s future as team leader has been in doubt after Marinkovich opted to take a ‘squad leadership approach’ rather than having a full-time skipper.
Marinkovich’s rotating captaincy policy drew much criticism, especially from his predecessor Lisa Alexander, as the coach insisted that was no way to relieve Bassett from the team.
However, the decision to name Bassett captain for the Constellation Cup opener was met with raised eyebrows.
The 32-year-old has been the Australian skipper since 2017 and a mainstay of the roster, but has been forced to leave Super Netball due to the emergence of Super Shot.
Although Bassett has been a prolific shooter throughout her career, she often performed better closer to goal and saw her playing time decrease with the Giants.
The veteran shooter has given up her contract with the Giants, joining Waikato Bay in the New Zealand National League for the 2021 season.
Despite the move overseas and doubts about her captain position, Bassett maintained that playing at the 2022 Commonwealth Games was a goal for her.
“I have had great conversations with key people within the Diamonds programs and we all agree that time in court is essential for my development,” Bassett said last October.
“My intention is to be part of our Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games squad, and I look forward to continuing to work with the team while playing for the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic next year.
Bassett is joined by five debutants in the Diamond squad for Game 1, with Kiera Austin, Verity Charles, Sophie Garbin, Kim Jenner and Care Koenen all named for the first time.
The series kicks off at 5:00 p.m. AEDT on Tuesday when Australia and New Zealand speak in Christchurch, with the match being broadcast live on 9Gem.