Wasps Netball all-but-booked their Final Four play-off spot with a dominant 44-58 away victory against Manchester Thunder.
The win sees Tamsin Greenway’s team go three points clear of the Manchester side in the Vitality Netball Superleague table and means only a huge goal-swing can prevent them from taking part at Final Four weekend next month.
Thunder and Wasps will meet again in the Superleague semi-finals if their league positions remain the same.
Wasps Director of Netball Greenway said: “It feels really good to finally have that Final Four spot secured, we were pretty fired up tonight and it was all about making sure we got the job done.
“Natalie Haythornthwaite was outstanding tonight, she was brilliant on the ball and defensively it was a great performance – we weren’t good enough defensively against Team Bath but we put that right tonight.
“We have a great squad here and what is making us so good at the moment is how unpredictable we are and the different line-ups we can put out.
“I wouldn’t expect it to be that convincing when we meet them in the semis, which I believe we will do, but I think it shows the strength we have across the board and what we can do to good teams.”
Greenway made her first start of the season at the Manchester Thunderdome and immediately linked up well with goal shooter Rachel Dunn to give Wasps an early four goal advantage.
It was a high pace start to the game from both sides, with Thunder eager to please their home fans and quickly bringing the score-line back level, as it remained until the end of the quarter.
By the second quarter, the game had become a shootout between Dunn and Thunder’s Joyce Mvula, with both shooters impressing.
Wasps started to build a lead mid-way through the second quarter, with their defensive players doing well to disrupt Thunder’s offensive rhythm.
Their efforts paid off, with fast hands forcing interceptions on the defensive end and providing the perfect platform for the Wasps shooting duo to build a nine goal lead going into half-time.
Wasps kept up the momentum after the break, with and a dominant display in the circle from Dunn maintaining her team’s advantage.
Wasps had all but sealed victory by the end of the third quarter, holding a commanding 13 goal lead.
The visitors continued to assert their dominance in the final stages, pressing the issue and securing an impressive 44-58.
Wasps Netball’s next fixture sees them return to the Ricoh Arena to face Surrey Storm in their next fixture on Monday, May 22 (8.00pm centre-pass).
Tickets for Wasps Netball vs Surrey Storm on May 22 start from £10 for adults while under-10s go free, and can be purchased from www.waspsnetball.co.uk/tickets.