Bath have ambition ahead of the weekend

Team Bath Netball are determined to “go out with a bang” as they prepare for their last-ever Super League fixture this weekend.

The Blue & Gold make the short journey across the Severn Bridge to face Cardiff Dragons on Saturday (6pm centre-pass) and will be cheered on by a good contingent of travelling fans at the Utilita Arena.11

The match, round two of this season’s Battle of the Bridge, is also being shown live on BBC Sport and Team Bath Netball Head Coach Asha Francis says her players want to put on a show.

“This is one last opportunity, one last chance to play together, and we will give it everything,” she said. “There were just six goals separating the sides when we met at the Team Bath Arena in April and we know there is a real opportunity to win this game

“Training has remained intense and we have certainly not thrown in the towel – it might be the end of Team Bath but it’s not the end of the players’ careers and they are true professionals. They are all competitors and they want Team Bath to go out with a bang.

“We are all human and we saw in our final home game against Strathclyde Sirens that it is hard to park those emotions. There is no doubt some of that will still be there but we have had more time to process the news now and we are determined to put out a performance to be proud of.”

There is a long history between the two clubs, who first met in the inaugural Super League season in 2005-06. Team Bath also beat Dragons in the 2013 Grand Final to secure the last of their historic five titles.

Team Bath go into the match on the back of a 72-57 defeat at semi-finalists Severn Stars last Friday. It was a last-ever home match for Stars, who are also leaving the Super League at the end of the 2024 season, and the visitors threatened to spoil the party as they led 19-13 after a fantastic first quarter.

“We really took it to them and were really smart,” said Francis. “Sadly, when we went into the second quarter, the errors started to creep in and Stars were able to regain the momentum. From that point we weren’t quite able to be as clinical as we were in the first quarter.

“Overall, if you look at how we played against Stars earlier in the season, you could see we have made massive improvements and great strides. Our shortfall once again, though, was not being consistent across the four quarters and not punishing teams when we are ahead.

“This is a team packed with massive potential and I hope we get to show that against Dragons on Saturday.”

IMG: Clive Jones PR

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