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Wasps rack up VNSL season-high score

Wasps Netball racked up a Superleague season-high score with a 69-37 victory against Sirens.

In the process, Tamsin Greenway’s defending champions have extended their winning start to the season to three games and moved immediately back to the top of the Vitality Netball Superleague table.

Wasps’ netball director was pleased with her team’s effort and in particular singled out the work of 19-year-old goal shooter George Fisher.

“I’m very pleased, I think the score-line reflected the way we played,” Greenway said.

“It was a really strong performance, Sirens started strongly and we had to fight to get that lead, but once we did it was a very classy display.

“The way we’re playing at the moment we’re a tough team to beat. Some of the netball we’re playing defensively and the amount of turnovers we’re getting mean we’re giving ourselves plenty of opportunities to capitalise on.

“George was absolutely outstanding tonight and Amy Flanagan was fantastic, Amy is really an unsung hero for our team.

“Teams aren’t going to want to come and play us here at the Ricoh Arena. The fans were brilliant again, I love that we have chants going for the girls, it makes everything so much more enjoyable out on the court.”

Fisher got the home side off to a strong start with her shooting touch helping her team score six unanswered goals to open the game.

Sirens’ star player, centre Sara Bayman, engaged in a good mid-court battle with Jade Clarke in the early stages and also pressured Natalie Haythornthwaite around the attacking circle.

This enabled the visitors to fight back, and helped by a few mistakes from the home side they limited Wasps to a four-goal advantage at the end of the first quarter.

Wasps upped the intensity following the restart, with a great interception from Clarke the highlight. This enabled the hosts to build momentum and double their advantage to eight.

Sam May, tasked with stopping Sirens shooter Bethan Goodwin, impressed at goal keeper, limiting her shooting, creating turnovers and continuing from where she left off in her player-of-the-match display during the season opener against Surrey Storm.

Wasps closed the second quarter with a 13-goal lead, after which Sirens sent Bayman to the bench, while Sophia Candappa and Fran Williams were introduced for the home side.

The new attacking partnership of Fisher and Haythornthwaite proved immediately fruitful, as the black-and-golds built an unassailable lead of 26.

And with the game all-but won, Wasps’ South-African import Renske Stoltz was given her debut for the final quarter, which ended with the home side cruising to a 69-37 win.

Wasps’ next home fixture sees them face Team Northumbria on Saturday, March 10 (7.00pm centre-pass) – following away trips to Hertfordshire Mavericks and Loughborough Lightning.

Tickets for Wasps Netball vs Team Northumbria on March 10 are available from from www.waspsnetball.co.uk/tickets.

Attendance: 1,030

Player of the match: George Fisher

Q1: 16-12 Q2: 34-21 Q3: 55-29 Q4: 69-37

Wasps starting seven: GK Sam May; GD Hannah Reid; WD Amy Flanagan; C Jade Clarke; WA Natalie Haythornthwaite; GA Rachel Dunn; GS George Fisher

Used Substitutes: GD Fran Williams, WA Sophia Candappa; GA Renske Stoltz; GK Josie Huckle

Sirens starting seven: GK Nicole Aiken-Pinnock; GD Leah Kennedy; WD Claire Brownie; C Sara Bayman; WA Nicola McCleery; GA Vanessa Walker; GS Bethany Goodwin

Used substitutes: WD Emily Nicholl, WA Sam Murphy, GD Ella Gibbons, GS Shantal Slater