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Netballers targetting another successful season as new campaign draws closer

Newbury Junior Netball Club is looking forward to the new season after celebrating last year’s successes at special pizza night evenings this summer.

The U11s have made remarkable progress since forming as a new squad in September, winning silver in their division of the Berkshire Junior Netball League (BJNL), as well as taking the Hatch Warren Tigers tournament title and finishing third in the Laurel Park tournament.

They were also third overall in the Blades tournament and, in the Dreams Tournament, finished a creditable fourth in their group.

The U11 at the Hatch Warren tournament
The U11 at the Hatch Warren tournament

Coaches Lorraine Bowden and Loretta Whitehead said they were “extremely proud of the way the girls have worked and bonded as a squad”.

After a tough start in their division of the BJNL, the U12 squad won seven out of eight of their final games. Going from strength to strength, they earned gold in the Windsor and Laurel Park tournaments.

Coach, Tina Wood, said: “I am super proud of the girls. They have achieved so much this year.”

The Under 13s were also in a very tough division in the BJN, but didn’t give up and coaches said their resilience shone through.

They trained hard and put effort into improving their game and some girls even played up an age group; some have taken their umpiring qualifications; and two have taken their netball to the next level – one joining performance club, Weston Park Blades; and the other with the Berkshire Performance Development Pathway, joining performance club, Royals.

Coach, Zoe Wright, said that she was very proud of them as a squad and as individuals after all that they had been through this season.

Moving on from last year’s success, the U14 squad continued to train hard and enjoyed attaining runner-up spot in the league this year. They also played some excellent netball in various summer competitions, winning the plate contest in the Bucks Phoenix tournament.

The U14s won the plate at the Bucks Phoenix tournament
The U14s won the plate at the Bucks Phoenix tournament
The U14 squad enjoy a celebration evening out at the end of a successful season
The U14 squad enjoy a celebration evening out at the end of a successful season

One player from this squad also moved to Weston Park Blades and has joined the South Region team.

Coach Alison Stamp said that it had been a pleasure to coach the squad over two years and was very proud of them all for their achievements.

The U16 squad played two teams in different divisions of the BJNL. The division 1 squad had a tough season, playing against teams containing regional players.

Despite this, the girls “continued to persevere, playing with tenaciousness, determination and true grit”.

In division 4, the other U16 team led the group for most of the season, before eventually achieving second place.

Vanessa Clothier, U16 coach, added: “It has been an absolute pleasure to coach the girls this season.

“Each training session was memorable and fun and they worked hard.”

One member of the squad also debuted for regional club, Weston Park Blades.

Head coaches Wright and Stamp also thanked all the parents who have transported their girls to various match and tournament venues and who have acted as scorers and timekeepers along the way.

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