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Young players catch the eye of England and Wales selectors as Phoenix Lacrosse Club celebrates its first season with summer social

A number of young lacrosse players have caught the eye of national selectors, just a year after their club started.

Phoenix Lacrosse Club was officially launched in March last year and has just finished its first full season – having increased its membership by nearly 50 per cent in the last 12 months.

And now Gemma Moon and India Duly have both been invited to trial for the England lacrosse team, after catching the eye of the selectors at a recent event in Nottingham.

Phoenix Lacrosse Club
Phoenix Lacrosse Club

Sophie Livingstone and Izzy John are also both playing in the Wales Under 19 performance squad, with Livingstone due to fly out to Italy with the team this summer for the Italia Cup.

Sophie Livingstone will travel to Italy with the Wales Under 19 performance squad this summer
Sophie Livingstone will travel to Italy with the Wales Under 19 performance squad this summer

The club is now celebrating the anniversary of its first full season with a summer social next weekend, where coaches’ awards will be handed out and education sessions on the England pathway and lacrosse at university will also be held.

Since its inception last year – as a response by parents to bring competitive lacrosse to West Berkshire – the club has picked up its first silverware and been highly commended in three local awards, including in the NWN Best in Business Best Sports Club category.

“The club has grown significantly in the past year,” said club chairman Alan Moon. “We have gone from one coach at the start of the season, to now having four coaches, which is great.

“At the end of last season we had 63 players across years 6 – 13. We now have 76 players in years 6-12 and 15 ladies.”

He said the club had been able to achieve so much in a relatively short space of time thanks to support from Greenham Trust, the Lacrosse Foundation, the Peter Baker Foundation, Oxford PharmaGenesis and Legacy Leisure.

As the club officially launched at the end of the season it spent its first months taking the sport to local schools in a new outreach programme.

Phoenix Lacrosse Club
Phoenix Lacrosse Club

American coach Morgan Radners, supported by a number of young helpers, visited eight local schools and taught more than 120 children across 20 sessions.

“Notably we had strong take up at Park House, Trinity and St Gabriel’s schools,” added Moon.

“Teachers at some of the schools have now had formal training too and we will be starting with Kennet School this month.

“We also ran a day of training indoors at the Waterside Centre for any local youths to try it and we ran our first Easter Camp at Trinity School.

“We are hoping to grow the club to about 100 players.

“We want to become the tour de force in the south east for lacrosse.”

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