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Clarke appointed NWC2019 ambassador

England Commonwealth gold medallist and long-standing netball star, Jade Clarke has been appointed as an ambassador for next year’s Netball World Cup.

Clarke was first selected for the Vitality Roses in 2002 and made her senior debut in 2003 playing against New Zealand.

During her career she has competed at four Netball World Cups and four Commonwealth Games.

Clarke also plays her domestic netball in the Vitality Netball Superleague, and recently re-joined Wasps Netball for the 2019 season.

A momentous year for the mid-courter, Clarke won her 150th cap in the final of the Commonwealth Games in Australia this April and is the most-capped England player of all time.

Speaking on her appointment as NWC2019 ambassador, Clarke said: “I’m thrilled to be named as an ambassador for the World Cup next year.

“I’ve had a long history with the Roses, and after the amazing experience at the Gold Coast earlier this year, it’s so exciting to be playing on home turf.”

Lindsay Impett, NWC2019 Event Director, added: “Jade is a fantastic ambassador for the Netball World Cup 2019, and for the sport itself.

“As the most-capped player in the Roses, Jade is a brilliant role model for netball fans and an example of where the sport can take you. I’m delighted to have her on board.”

Clarke has already begun her ambassadorial duties, as judge of the NWC2019 mascot competition.

See Jade in action at Super 10 – get your squad together and head to the season opener on Saturday 5th January 2019 at Arena Birmingham!

wasps

Wasps’ Mansfield: “They did themselves proud”

Wasps Netball secured a clean sweep in a pre-season Tri Tournament as they continue their preparations for the upcoming Vitality Netball Superleague campaign.

It marked the first time Mel Mansfield had led her team as Head Coach at the Ricoh Arena, overcoming London Pulse and Team Bath in a packed afternoon of netball.

The tournament saw the debut of new side London Pulse, with the new season getting underway in January 2019.

Mansfield was particularly impressed with the performance of her young players in their first appearance at the Ricoh.

“It was really good run out for us. I was particularly pleased with how we performed against Bath – we really stepped it up a gear,” said Mansfield.

“We were able to get some of our young players some good court time too, which is great experience for them. They did themselves proud against strong opposition.

“Defensively we were just brilliant, but this is by no means the finished product yet. It was good to be able to work out what our priorities need to be before our first fixture in January.

“Fran Williams played at Wing Defence, which was new for her, but I think she did really well. She is turning into an important, senior player for us.

“It was good to be back out at the Ricoh Arena too. The atmosphere was great and was the perfect opportunity for our new signings to get a taste of what playing in front of our home crowd is like.”

Wasps started the afternoon with their encounter against London Pulse.

The black-and-gold’s enjoyed a fast start, rushing out to an early three goal advantage and securing a six goal lead by the end of the first quarter.

A duo of flying intercepts, from Hannah Knights and Amy Flanagan, set the tone for the second quarter, as Wasps built a double-digit lead.

Mansfield’s side continued to shine in the second half, building a big lead to run out eventual 41-26 winners.

In the afternoon’s second fixture, Team Bath met London Pulse. Pulse again struggled to get into their rhythm as Bath took the lead early.

By half-time the game was all but decided, with Bath leading 27-13. The impressive display from Bath continued in the final two quarters, winning 44-29.

The final game of the afternoon saw a rematch of last season’s Vitality Netball Superleague semi-final with Wasps against Team Bath.

Bath took the lead early, but were pegged back by sharpshooter Rachel Dunn. It was end-to-end throughout the first quarter, with Wasps edging it 9-6.

The visitors fought back and by half-time had reduced the deficit to just one goal. Wasps took control after the break, with two quick-fire goals giving them the momentum.

The home side had built a ten goal lead mid-way through the final quarter. Bath attempted to mount a comeback, but the home side stood strong, winning 36-28.

Wasps Netball season tickets are now general sale for the Vitality Netball Superleague 2019 season. To find out more visit https://www.waspsnetball.co.uk/season-membership

Tickets are now on sale for Super 10 – get your squad together and head to the season opener on Saturday 5th January 2019 at Arena Birmingham!

Jade Clarke

Roses go head-to-head in tri-tournament

Two of England’s most decorated netballers will go head-to-head in a tournament at the Ricoh Arena this weekend.

Wasps Netball star Jade Clarke and Team Bath’s Serena Guthrie will meet as part of a Tri Tournament at the Ericsson Indoor Arena on Saturday, November 17.

Three teams will compete in the pre-season showcase, with Bath, Wasps and Vitality Netball Superleague newcomers London Pulse battling it out on the day.

The packed afternoon of action will see the first centre-pass take place at 3pm, with the final game underway at 5.45pm.

Clarke is used to lining up alongside Guthrie in an England dress, but this will be the first time the duo have played against each other since their time playing in the Australian Suncorp Super League.

They have both been named in the Vitality Roses squad for a three-match series against Uganda next month, with Guthrie as captain and Clarke as vice-captain.

The squad also features Wasps’ Rachel Dunn and Bath’s Eboni Usoro-Brown, who are both expected to be in action at the Ricoh Arena Tri-Tournament.

Clarke says she is looking forward to testing herself against one of the world’s best mid-court players.

“We have always had good battles over the years and we love coming up against each other,” she said.

“Serena is one of my best friends and I think you always go harder when you play against your friends. She is one of the best in the world in her position and it will be good to test myself against her.

“It’s great for the league that players like Serena are coming back to play in the Vitality Netball Superleague which is going from strength to strength.”

It will be the first time that netball fans will get the chance to see London Pulse’s Vitality Netball Superleague side take to the court – after announcing their squad for the 2019 season only last week.

The tournament will also be Wasps’ first outing since lifting the British Fast5 All-Stars title last month.

Clarke added: “We’re very interested to see what London Pulse will bring. Their squad has a real mix of quality and I think they will be a dark horse in the upcoming season.

“I’m really excited to be back out there in a Wasps dress. We haven’t got long until the new season starts and pre-season tests like this are really important.

“All three teams will be looking to prove themselves on Saturday and it will be a great showcase of netball.”

Wasps Netball season tickets for the 2019 Vitality Netball Superleague campaign are on sale now exclusively to 2018 season ticket holders, with season tickets on general sale on Saturday, November 17.

Tickets for the Tri Tournament on November 17 start from £20 for adults and £10 for juniors and can be purchased from www.waspsnetball.co.uk

Tickets are now on sale for Super 10 – get your squad together and head to the season opener on Saturday 5th January 2019 at Arena Birmingham!

WU Wasps Netball 20

Wasps star leads first training on new courts

Wasps Netball star Sam May was on hand to lead the inaugural training session at the new outdoor courts at the £49 million University of Warwick’s Sports and Wellness Hub.

The masterclass marked the first time the courts had been used – as the two-time Vitality Netball Superleague champion put the University’s netball club through their paces.

The courts – like all the new facilities – will be available for community use, hosting netball training sessions, matches and tournaments.

The three new outdoor courts are floodlit and suitable for use throughout the year.

Sam, who has signed with Wasps for a third season, ran through a series of drills and shared her expertise which has made her one of the leading defensive forces in the Vitality Netball Superleague.

Sam said: “The new courts here are fantastic and it was great to be among the first group to step onto them.

“The new Sports and Wellness Hub is stunning and we’re looking forward performing on the indoor courts too when we get a chance.

“These courts are at the University, but they are for the whole community and they are a great addition to the sports facilities across Coventry and Warwickshire.”

The courts are among the first facilities to be available for use at the new hub, which is set to open fully in April 2019.

It will include a 230-station gym, a 25-metre swimming pool, multi-purpose sports halls, a cutting-edge climbing wall, six squash courts and a range of outdoor sports pitches.

The facility will be open for public use and feature free on-site parking.

Lisa Dodd-Mayne, Director of Sport & Active Communities at the University of Warwick, said: “We’d like to thank Sam for coming down to try out the new courts and for an athlete of her calibre to be the first to use them is fantastic.

“Our new outdoor courts will be of great benefit to the netball club at the University, so it was great to get them down to try them out for the first time

“The courts are available for local people to use and we want to encourage clubs and communities to get in touch and take advantage of the new facilities.”

Cammie McCready, University of Warwick Women’s Netball Club president, added: “I think the new courts are absolutely fantastic, expanding the facilities here will only serve to get more people involved in netball.

“It was really exciting to be the first people to come and try out the courts, they are premium quality and to have the chance to train with Sam made it even more memorable for all us.”

Tickets are now on sale for Super 10 – get your squad together and head to the season opener on Saturday 5th January 2019 at Arena Birmingham!