British Fast5 Netball All-Stars Championship: Team Bath, Lightning and Sirens announce squads | Netball News

The 2021 British Fast5 All-Stars Championship takes place on October 30, with every match live on Sky Sports; Loughborough Lightning are the defending champions following their stunning victory in 2019

Last Updated: 19/10/21 6:06pm

Sophie Drakeford-Lewis will be vice-captain for Team Bath Netball at the Fast5 Championship (Image credit: Ben Lumley)

Sophie Drakeford-Lewis will be vice-captain for Team Bath Netball at the Fast5 Championship (Image credit: Ben Lumley)

Team Bath Netball, defending champions Loughborough Lightning and Strathclyde Sirens have all announced their squads for the 2021 British Fast5 All-Stars Championship.

Every moment of the 2021 British Fast5 All-Stars Championship will be live on Sky Sports on October 30, as eight teams compete for a Β£100,000 prize fund.

Hosts London Pulse and the league’s newest franchise Leeds Rhinos Netball are set to take part in the competition for the first time, alongside Team Bath, Lightning and Sirens.

Manchester Thunder, Saracens Mavericks and Wasps will also be taking to court at the Copper Box Arena in London.

For Team Bath, England internationals Imogen Allison and Sophie Drakeford-Lewis will take on leadership roles as captain and vice-captain, respectively. The duo will also be joined by fellow Vitality Roses player Layla Guscoth.

Jess Shaw will make her first appearance for Team Bath since recovering from ankle surgery, while 18-year-olds Molly Hole and Lily Jones are set for their first taste of senior netball in Bath colours.

Completing a dynamic Team Bath squad are Welsh international Betsy Creak, Kirsty Harris, Tash Pavelin and Lucy Herdman, who plays Superleague netball for Gloucester-based Severn Stars.

Team Bath Netball – Fast5 Squad

Imogen Allison (captain) Sophie Drakeford-Lewis (vice-captain) Betsy Creak
Layla Guscoth Kirsty Harris Lucy Herdman
Molly Hole Lily Jones Tash Pavelin
Jess Shaw

“It is such a fun tournament and we’ve really embraced that in our preparations,” said Anna Stembridge, Team Bath’s head coach. “The girls have been hitting it hard but there have been lots of smiles too.

“Lucy [Herdman] has also slotted into the squad really well. She played goal-keeper for Stars in the Superleague last season but we’ll be using her as a shooter.

“She played exceptionally well for Celtic Dragons in that role at the 2019 Fast5 and landed some fantastic long bombs.”

Lightning bid to defend title with strong squad

Fran Williams will get her first chance to run out in a Loughborough Lightning dress, after being named in their Fast5 squad.

The England international, who made the move from Wasps to Lightning during the off-season, will link up with fellow new signing, Zanele Vimbela, in Lightning’s defensive-end.

Meanwhile, England internationals Beth Cobden, Nat Panagarry and Hannah Joseph will form a lethal mid-court combination for Sara Francis-Bayman’s outfit.

Mary Cholhok will provide Lightning with a great presence in attack, and expect Ella Clark – who plays both netball and basketball at international level – to be a strong shooter from distance.

England U21 shooter Emma Thacker and defender Alice Harvey complete Lightning’s line-up, as they bid to secure the title for a third time.

Maxwell returns to Sirens for Fast5

Claire Maxwell will return to court with Strathclyde Sirens for the first time at the Fast5 Championship, following the birth of her daughter.

Maxwell, who confirmed that she would be back on court for the 2022 Superleague season during the signing window, will be in mid-court alongside some of last season’s standout players.

Beth Dix, Gia Abernethy and Taylor McKevitt are all poised to take to court, while Abby Tyrrell will make her first appearance in Sirens colours.

Emma Barrie, Bethan Goodwin and Niamh McCall will all put their long-range shooting to the test, and the whole squad will be led by head coach Lesley MacDonald.

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