16 year old Alex Sinclair from Christchurch in Dorset is the new name on the team sheet for reigning champions TeamBath when they take on Celtic Dragons at the Welsh Institute of Sport on Friday evening in the Co-operative Netball Superleague.
“We played much better against Leeds Met last Saturday, and we are looking to build on that performance on Friday night,” she said. “It would be great to be in the top four by the Christmas break but obviously that will also depend on other teams.”
Meanwhile, a hotly contested match up between two sisters is set to be the highlight of the London derby, when Brunel Hurricanes welcomes Mavericks to the Guildford Spectrum Centre on Friday night (8.30pm start). Holly Nichols of Mavericks is set to line up in centre court against her sister Katie, who has been in superb form this season for Brunel Hurricanes, and with previous fixtures between the two sides decided by only a handful of goals, the stage is set for a thrilling encounter.
Loughborough Lightning hope to have Welsh international Becky James back in their line up after her World Championships exploits when the Leicestershire-based team faces Leeds Carnegie at the Loughborough University Netball Centre on Saturday (6.00pm start). After two physically challenging games, Loughborough will need to contain the fast-paced Leeds attack and contain sharpshooting Tracey Neville and Karen Greig if they are to take three wins from three games.
The final match of the round is a trans-Pennine encounter, when league leaders Team Northumbria host Northern Thunder at the Gateshead Leisure Centre on Monday night (play starts at 7.30pm). Thunder have been putting together some encouraging passages of play in recent weeks, and will want to ensure four consistent quarters if they are to overcome the well drilled, confident Northumbria team.
Tickets are available for all matches – for more information, please visit www.englandnetball.co.uk and click on the Co-operative Netball Superleague logo. And catch all the action from the Northumbria/Thunder game on Sky Sports next Thursday evening.
FRANK UIJLENBROEK WORLDSPORTPICS