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The Net England

Jess announces first international squad

Jess Thirlby has announced her first group of players travelling to Australia and New Zealand

England Netball has announced the names of 15 athletes that will be traveling to Australia and New Zealand for a behind closed doors tournament later this month.

The Vitality Roses squad, which includes Vitality Netball World Cup bronze medalists Fran Williams and Natalie Panagarry, will play and train against Australia’s development team in Canberra, before both sides travel across to Auckland to face the New Zealand A side.

The Roses, who will be going on tour for the first time with their new Head Coach, Jess Thirlby, will depart the week commencing 23 September and return on 13 October.

The players selected for the tour are as follows:
Imogen Allison Team Bath WD/C
Summer Artman Team Bath GK/GD
Eleanor Cardwell Manchester Thunder GS/GA
Amy Carter Manchester Thunder C/WD
Sophie Drakeford-Lewis Team Bath GA/WA
George Fisher Saracens Mavericks GA/GS
Laura Malcolm Manchester Thunder C/WD/WA
Gabby Marshall Saracens Mavericks C/WD
Victoria Oyesola Loughborough Lightning GD/WD
Natalie Panagarry Loughborough Lightning C/WD
Jessica Shaw Loughborough Lightning C/WA
Kate Shimmin Adelaide Thunderbirds GK/GD
Olivia Tchine London Pulse GS/GA
Razia Quashie Saracens Mavericks GK/GD
Fran Williams Wasps Netball GD/WD

Jess Thirlby, Vitality Roses Head Coach, said: “It is very exciting to be taking this team on tour to Australia and New Zealand to compete against both team’s equivalent emerging talent.

“We have some new faces within the Roses programme now and this is a great chance to expose those players to new styles of play and competition, whilst giving them the opportunity to learn from some of their more experienced teammates, for instance Natalie and Fran who had the amazing opportunity to compete in the Vitality Netball World Cup earlier this year.

“I’m very much looking forward to my first international tour as Head Coach of the Vitality Roses and can’t wait for what the future holds for this team.”

Jess will be joined by former England player Sonia Mkoloma as Assistant Coach for the duration of the tour. Sonia has competed in three Netball World Cups and Commonwealth Games and has been inducted into the England Netball Hall of Fame.