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Vitality Netball Superleague: Team Bath Netball and Leeds Rhinos Netball score significant wins |  Netball News


The Bath Netball team finished in first after a fierce encounter with Manchester Thunder (Image credit – Morgan Harlow)

Team Bath Netball and Leeds Rhinos both reminded the competition of their intentions, with two outstanding team performances to beat Manchester Thunder and Wasps.

For Anna Stembridge’s outfit, the result means they move up six points to the top of the table, while the Rhinos continue to stay focused on the top four and a potential play-off position.

The Vitality Netball Superleague returns with Round 15 on Sunday and the four-game day kicks off with Severn Stars taking on Loughborough Lightning at 12pm.

Vitality Netball Superleague – Rounds 13 and 14

Surrey Storm 39-48 Celtic Dragons
Saracens Mavericks 47-55 Loughborough Lightning
Surrey Storm 39-45 Star Severn
London Pulse 38-48 Sirens Strathclyde
Saracens Mavericks 59-39 Celtic Dragons
Strathclyde Sirens 51-69 Leeds Rhinos Netball
London Pulse 42-50 Manchester Thunder
Team Bath Netball 41-37 Wasps
Manchester Thunder Team Bath Netball 41-44
Leeds Rhinos Netball 51-41 Wasps

Guthrie and Allison play Bath Against Thunder

Serena Guthrie’s player of the match performance and the exceptional work of fellow midfielder Imogen Allison meant Team Bath Netball came from behind to beat Manchester Thunder 44-41 at the Copper Box Arena.

The high-quality competition, which could still be replayed as this year’s grand final, saw both teams raise the bar and ultimately Bath perfectly timed their run.

Quarter-by-quarter scores

Q1 Q2 Q3 T4 FT
Manchester Thunder 14 9 11 7 41
Team swim netball 9 14 9 12 44

“This victory meant everything to us,” Guthrie told Sky Sports during his interview with the player of the match.

“Thunder has been a bit of a benchmark, historically, for us. This match for us was on the day of the championship, on the semi-final and the final.

“I stand here but I think the seven [of us] had moments of absolute brilliance there, ”she continued.

“If we choose to learn from it, this game is a real benchmark and can be a turning point for us in this competition.”

Vitality Netball Superleague: Team Bath Netball and Leeds Rhinos Netball score significant wins |  Netball News

Serena Guthrie had an outstanding game for Team Bath Netball (Image credit – Morgan Harlow)

From the first whistle, both teams signaled their intention and Thunder rushed into the race eagerly to right the wrongs of their 60-35 loss to Bath in the fifth round.

That day Karen Greig said Bath caught her team at their “worst” and this time around they stole.

Amy Carter’s pressure on the court gave them a two-goal advantage and with careful work up front, Thunder improved that lead to five in the quarter.

Vitality Netball Superleague: Team Bath Netball and Leeds Rhinos Netball score significant wins |  Netball News

Thunder and Bath are both contenders for this year’s Superleague title

The 2019 champions continued to make Bath’s life difficult on offense in the second quarter, but Stembridge’s outfit showed she can learn on the job. They sharpened passes from Kim Borger and Sophie Drakeford-Lewis and leveled things at 23-23 at halftime.

Unsurprisingly, none of the head coaches made any personnel changes in the interval and with another increase in defensive intensity, Thunder regained control of the scoreboard.

Heading into the final quarter, the breathtaking roars from both groups highlighted just how much that meant for each team, and it was Bath who found some extra equipment.

First, they sent Thunder back before Allison started their last run to the line.

The WD’s first-phase ball in Borger off the center pass made his teammates scream, then an exceptional flight to the edge of the circle, sparked further cheers from their bench.

With Allison stepping up, captain Guthrie did too, and the England international’s latest defensive interventions saw Bath earn all three points and stay on pole in the standings.

Rhinoceros triumph over wasps

Leeds Rhinos Netball took another big step forward in their debut Superleague season, defeating the two-time Wasps champions by 10 goals on Monday night.

The Rhinos have been through a lot already in their inaugural season, but with all of their players now in good shape, they produced a courageous team performance to beat Wasps 51-41.

Vitality Netball Superleague: Team Bath Netball and Leeds Rhinos Netball score significant wins |  Netball News

The competition’s new franchise shows exactly what it’s made of in its first season (Image credit – Ben Lumley)

Ahead of the game, Dan Ryan said the Rhinos identified some potential weaknesses in Wasps’ job and an early 8-3 advantage validated their pre-game analysis.

For the remainder of the first trimester, they dictated the procedures; Vicki Oyesola and Tuaine Keenan jostled each other and, as Ryan’s collective team, set the tempo and tone.

The Wasps introduced Gezelle Allison to GA for the 12-minute second set, and they instantly settled in slightly on offense.

Allison’s style and presence meant the Rhinos’ defenders weren’t able to stay on top and a 13-11 quarterback in favor of the Wasps put them back in the mix at halftime.

The third quarter was a real battle of wills, as the two outfits adapted to each other’s work and ultimately fell apart.

Quarter-by-quarter scores

Q1 Q2 Q3 T4 FT
Leeds Rhinos Netball 12 11 ten 18 51
wasps 9 13 ten 9 41

As the fight stood at 33-32, Rhinos took the first center pass of the last quarter. After quickly converting it to a goal, they turned Wasps’ next center pass and didn’t look back from there.

With Northern Ireland international Fi Toner at WD, Wasps’ attack faltered again and in contrast, Rhinos stepped on the accelerator.

“It was a great competition from both teams, all the Wasps credit every time we took control of the game they took it back,” Ryan told Sky Sports.

“I’m really proud of my team for taking the next step, taking wasp scalp is huge for us so I’m really proud of them.”

Sky Sports is your home of netball. The Vitality Netball Superleague continues Sunday with the 15th inning and four consecutive games broadcast live on Sky Sports’ YouTube channel starting at 12 p.m. ET.

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