Laura Rudland says she is returning to Team Bath Netball as a more confident player after rejoining the South West franchise for the 2019 Vitality Netball Superleague season.
The 23-year-old, who can play at wing-attack and goal-attack, progressed through the Blue & Gold development pathway and was part of the Vitality Netball Superleague squad in both 2016 and 2017 before spending last season with West Country rivals Severn Stars.
“I’m really excited to be back,” she said. “I think it’s going to be a really good year and I’m looking forward to renewing some existing combinations and forging new ones.
“I really enjoyed my season with Severn Stars and am grateful for the opportunities I had there but I am excited by the challenge of coming back to Team Bath and being part of such a talented squad.
“The 2017 season with Bath was my first full year in the Superleague and it takes times to get used to the competition and the whole environment. I built on that last year, gained more experience of playing in front of Vitality Netball Superleague crowds, and I feel more comfortable going out on court.
“I also mostly played goal-attack during my last season here but I got quite a bit of court-time at wing-attack with Stars and that has really increased my confidence in delivering in both positions.
“That is one of the most exciting things about our squad for the season ahead, there are so many possible mid-court and attacking combinations that we can put together. I’m looking forward to challenging for court-time and also playing with some amazing players around me. I can’t wait to get started.”
Off the court, Rudland – a University of Bath Sports Performance graduate – is Director of Netball at Clifton College in Bristol.
“It’s my second year at Clifton and I’m really enjoying it,” she said. “It’s challenging to manage both roles at times but what I learn here with Team Bath I can take back to teach the kids and help them develop. They are eager to come and watch us in the Superleague next season as well!”
Jess Thirlby, Team Bath Netball Head Coach, added: “It is great to welcome Laura back to the Blue & Gold for 2019 after she made her Vitality Netball Superleague debut with us in 2017.
“With two years of the Vitality Netball Superleague now under her belt, she returns with a confidence and experience that will prove invaluable to our squad this year. She is an intelligent player who can play at both GA and WA, and she plays with a great sense of intuition.
“As a graduate from the University of Bath, Laura has fitted back into the squad seamlessly and will no doubt impact positively across the club.”