Stratford youngsters given a Wasps Netball masterclass

Back row from left, Wasps Netball’s Mel Mansfield, Tamsin Greenway, Fran Williams, Josie Huckle, Sophie Candappa, Lucy Parize, Lucy Harris, Amy Flanagan, Sam May and Rachel Dunn with school children at the community day.

SCHOOL children from Stratford were given a masterclass from Wasps Netball players at a community open day held by the region’s newest professional sports team.

More than 50 young people from The Croft Prep School and Welford-on-Avon Primary School were among 600 players that went along to the Ericsson Indoor Arena at the Ricoh Arena, the home of Wasps Netball, to take part in a host of activities and meet Wasps Netball’s star-studded squad.

They took to the first team court to receive coaching tips from Wasps’ director of netball Tamsin Greenway and first-team players such as last season’s Vitality Netball Superleague top-scorer Rachel Dunn, Sam May and West Midlands girl Lucy Parize.

Activities included netball invasion games and ball exercises before playing a series of matches.

Greenway said: “These events are all about unlocking the masses of potential for netball in the West Midlands.

 “There’s a huge club and school base here in the area but there hasn’t been an elite team here since 2004, so it’s all about letting the next generation of netballers know that we are here whether that’s nurturing their game or supporting the team.

 “It was a great day of netball and you could see the excitement in all of their eyes when they took to the court, something which both the players and coaching staff are really passionate about.

“We’ve had players taking time off work to coach, including all of our age group coaches, so it’s been a huge project to pull everything together.

 “This is just the start for us, and we are planning more events alongside the Wasps rugby team ahead of the new netball season.”

Wasps Netball’s first season in the Vitality Netball Superleague begins on 21st February away to Sirens, with their first home game in the Ericsson Indoor Arena taking place on 5 March against Hertfordshire Mavericks (6pm centre-pass).

Speaking about the upcoming season, Greenway added: “I’m confident that we are going in the right direction – we still have six weeks to finalise plans, but the team is looking good and feeling happy as we pick up speed going into that first game.”

Tickets for Wasps Netball’s first Vitality Netball Superleague game versus Hertfordshire Mavericks are available at starting from £10 for adults while under-10s go free. Group booking discounts are available.