Netball

UKAF Looking Forward To International Netball 'Challenge'

The team will come up against two national teams in a tournament in Gosport.

The UK Armed Forces netball players will be in action against international sides at a tournament in Gosport.

The team, who were announced at the Inter Services Championships, will come up against the Irish side and a mixed-gender England netball team at the weekend.

The tournament will serve as a test for the UKAF selectors, who are looking ahead to the Netball Europe competition in May.

The Army's Captain Sam James is expected to play a part in Gosport and discussed how the tournament came to be.

She said: "Our coach has the connections because she is a high-level coach, but we also have a strong relationship with Ireland. We have played them the last couple of seasons now.

"We’ve been over to them and we thought it would be a nice invitation to bring them over."

The UKAF team features a number of Army players who helped defend their Inter Services title earlier this month.

The UKAF team will also come up against an England side consisting of both men and women which is a prospect that excited Capt James.

She said: "We are just incredibly lucky that England Nets are have agreed to join in as well.

"They are incredible right now.

"It’ll be a challenge, but one we really want to do.

"We have got Netball Europe coming up so for us to play these high-level teams is a fantastic opportunity."

Regarding the military side's chances of success, James has put their focus on their young players.

She said: "It’s always good to stretch yourself and the youth of our team are very strong.

"Each season, the youth gets stronger and stronger so I’m looking forward to it."