Severn Stars’ Head Coach, Sam Bird, says her side are looking to “go into battle” against their Midlands rivals, the reigning Superleague champions, this weekend.
The team is back at the University of Worcester Arena to face Wasps Netball tomorrow (Saturday 17 February), a week after they narrowly lost their opening game of the season by one goal in the final seconds of the match.
But Bird is looking to put that disappointment behind them and says that although Wasps are a strong side, her side has the strength to take them on.
“We’re really excited to play last year’s Champions,” said Bird. “They have another great squad this year and we are looking to go into battle against them. It’s great to have two Superleague teams in the West Midlands with players of such high calibre.”
Having led from the first centre pass against Manchester Thunder in their opening match in the Vitality Netball Superleague, Stars had a healthy 10-point lead at half-time.
Though Thunder had closed the deficit, Stars came within a minute of victory before a contact call and subsequent penalty shot saw Thunder take the lead 48-47, giving Stars no time to respond.
Now Stars, a joint franchise between the University of Worcester and University of Gloucestershire, face Coventry-based Wasps, who took the title and began this season with a win against Surrey Storm.
Despite the disappointment of coming so close in Stars’ opening fixture, Bird said the team could take many positives from the game, including how much the side has progressed since its debut season, into the next match.
“Last week we lost by one goal, which was painful for us indeed having lead for so much of the game,” said Bird.
“However, the progress from the season before where we lost heavily to Thunder is to be celebrated and we are positive as a group about continuing to improve through the season.
“It’s a long season and we are confident as a group that we have started our campaign with lots to be positive about. Clearly Wasps are very strong, but so are we and I’m expecting another humdinger of a match for our fans!”
For tickets to the match, which starts at 6pm, visit www.severnstars.co.uk.