Forget Chelsea or Arsenal, one London side has already done the league and cup double for the 2006-7 season.
But, rather than a football team, the side in question is Academy Netball Club which has added the Premier League division 1 title to the Netball UK Challenge Cup title which the club won earlier this season.
Academy, based in Acton, clinched the Premier League division 1 title with a controlled 43-34 victory over last season’s beaten Challenge Cup finalists Hucclecote from Gloucestershire, inspired by an outstanding defensive performance from Ruth Gibson, Nicole McFarlane and Donna Fearon. And, as club coach Sonia Taylor explains, the double is even sweeter thanks to a very special part of club history:
“This year is our club’s 40th anniversary, and all the players have been awesome. They have been focused and determined to achieve something special, and they have all given 110% throughout the season to make it a very special year for us. We knew it was going to be a hard match, and Hucclecote gave us a fierce contest right through the court.”
In its 40 years, Academy Netball Club has started the netballing careers of numerous elite netballers players – including former international Hellen Manufor and current England international Naida Hutchinson, who will feature for England A in the tri-series between England, England A, New Zealand and Australia. For further information about the series, please visit www.englandnetball.co.uk.
GS O Beveridge, GA C Buchanan, WA B Robinson, C C Fitzgerald, WD D Fearon GD R Gibson GK N Mcfarlane Changes/substitutions: 3rd Q: K Collinson C, McFarlane to GD, Gibson to GK, 4th Q: GS L Press
GS J Abbott, GA G Gray, WA B Hemmings C R Henry, WD S Essex, GD J Gabriel, GK S Perry Changes/substitutions: 3rd Q: GA J Garland, WA R Morgan Smith
Note to Editors: Sonia Taylor is available for interview today – please get in touch to arrange a suitable time.
Picture shows the Academy squad, after winning the Netball UK Challenge Cup in March 07.
Press Enquiries: Rona Hunnisett Tel: 020 8406 3467
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photo Getty Images