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Surrey Storm at Resorts World, Birmingham, England on 5th February 2022

Surrey Storm host Wasps in a big game on Monday night

Surrey Storm host Wasps in the Monday Night Netball, live on Sky Sports, as Round 9 comes to a conclusion and the halfway point of the season draws closer.

For two-time champions Wasps it’s the second game in three days as they play their double-header round following an impressive victory over an illness and injury-hit Team Bath on Saturday.

Storm are fresh from a week off after beating Saracens Mavericks in Round 8 – a success that means they are chasing a third consecutive home win.

With both teams locked on nine points in the Vitality Superleague table, a win will keep them within touching distance of fourth-placed Saracens Mavericks who have 15 points from their nine games.

Coverage on Sky Sports Mix, Arena and Main Event is underway at 5pm with build-up and analysis ahead of a 5.30pm centre pass.

Head-to-Head

Played – 8; Surrey Storm wins – 2; Wasps wins – 6

Ever since Wasps entered the league in 2017, there has been a rivalry between these two teams born out of the fact that Wasps first ever squad was drawn from a number of former Surrey favourites who has won the 2016 Superleague title.

Rachel Dunn, Sophia Candappa, Hannah Knights (nee Reid) and Amy Flanagan were among those to make the switch, going on to win back-to-back title with the newly formed franchise under Tamsin Greenway.

It is also Wasps who have had the upper hand in the meetings between the teams. Prior to Storm’s victory at the end of last season at the Copper Box, Wasps had won each of the previous five encounters.

Surrey’s only other win came in the 2017 season and was on the road at the CBS Arena.

All three matches to have been played at Surrey Sports Park have gone the way of Wasps, whose dominance of the fixture is underlined by the fact they have averaged 66 goals prior to last season’s reduced 12 minutes quarters.

Last 5 Meetings

June 2021 – Surrey Storm 39-35 Wasps

February 2021 – Wasps 47-33 Surrey Storm

April 2019 – Wasps 76-42 Surrey Storm

February 2019 – Surrey Storm 47-70 Wasps

May 2018 – Surrey Storm 36-63 Wasps

The Season So Far

Both teams find themselves on the fringe of the top four race, sitting in seventh and eighth place respectively with nine points, three behind Team Bath in sixth and six behind Leeds Rhinos and Saracens Mavericks in fifth and fourth spot.

In what looks like being a wide open race to make the end of season semi-finals, victory in the Monday Night Netball would continue an upturn in form for both franchises.

Ella Powell-Davies has been a regular at goal defence for Wasps this season and will go against Thunder's formidable circle (Image: Ben Lumley)

Ella Powell-Davies has been a regular at goal defence for Wasps this season and will go against Thunder’s formidable circle (Image: Ben Lumley)

Storm have won three of their last six – all three wins coming against fellow top four contenders. Their first victory of the season came at Team Bath and they have followed with home victories over Leeds Rhinos and Saracens Mavericks.

Wasps endured a tough start to the season, picking up just a solitary victory from their first six games. But they have looked back to their best in recent weeks, starting with a narrow defeat at Leeds in Round 6.

Mel Mansfield’s team have won two of their last three games against Celtic Dragons and Team Bath, however with Storm winning each of their last two home games, Wasps form on the road will be a concern.

After two defeats at Season Opener in Birmingham, they’ve lost all four games on the road so far this season.

Surrey Storm – L L W L W L L W

Wasps – L L W L L L W L W

Key Match-Up

Rachel Dunn is has been a model of consistency (again) under the posts and how Surrey’s defensive circle handle the evergreen shooter will go a long way to deciding the game.

Leah Middleton started Storm’s last match as goalkeeper – a first change in the GK bib this season with Alima Priest in the position for all seven previous games.

That switch was to bring Felisitus Kwangwa. in for a first start of the season and if Mikki Austin sticks with that new look Dunn and her attacking teammates will give them a tough test.

Dunn’s partnership with goal attack Lucy Parize and wing attack Iona Christian has been getting stronger each week, all three players have started every game and two of their last six matches have yielded at least 60 goals.

In Numbers

Proscovia Peace’s return to the Vitality Superleague was a huge off-season story and Storm big-name recruit has not disappointed.

Proscovia Peace against Manchester Thunder (Image: Touchline Pics)

Proscovia Peace has returned to the Vitality Superleague this season (Image: Touchline Pics)

The Ugandan leads the way at the top of the scoring standings with 383 goals, and at a remarkable 95% success rate.

Wasps captain Josie Huckle will have her hands full dealing with the presence of Peace, but can call on 37 deflections – the third highest tally in the league this season – as she looks to keep the shooter quiet.

At the other end Dunn has a conversion rate of 93% but it’s the role of Scotland international Iona Christian that is just as crucial, her tally of 172 feeds trails only Sirens Gia Abernathy.

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