Strathclyde Sirens ready to inspire netball’s next generation

Strathclyde Sirens are calling on the home crowd to help them kick start their Vitality Netball Superleague season this evening when they play in Glasgow for the first time in 2020.

Strathclyde Sirens captain Gia Abernethy with team-mates Niamh McCall, Zanele Vimbela and Lauren Tait at the launch of Netball Scotland’s new campaign, #KindnessRevolution, which aims to encourage kindness in everyday life and across social media. The players are pictured at Princes Square shopping centre in Glasgow, which has gone into partnership with the Sirens. Picture: Mark F Gibson

Last year the team finished ninth in the ten-team competition, recording just three wins from 18 completed games, and they have begun this campaign with two defeats.

However, there have been plenty of positives to take from the losses to London Pulse in Birmingham and to the Lightning in Loughborough and the squad are looking forward to playing Surrey Storm tonight in front of the home fans at the Emirates Arena (7pm).

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“We all love playing at the Emirates and in front of a home crowd,” Sirens captain Gia Abernethy said.

“The people behind the scenes at the club have done a great job to really engage the Scottish netball public and get them along to watch and, as players, we take our responsibilities seriously.

“That means that we always stay behind afterwards to sign autographs and have selfies taken to try and inspire the next generation as well as helping new people get exposed to this great sport. The fans make a great noise and cheer us on when we are playing and the best way that we can repay them is by winning games at home. We have quite a few long bus journeys down south for our away games, so when we have games in Glasgow we have to make the most of our home comforts and play some positive netball.” As well as Australian Abernethy, players such as Claire Maxwell and Zanele Vimbela are likely to be key for the Sirens if they are to get a win tonight.

South African Vimbela is no stranger to the city having played for her country at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014. She has previously represented Team Bath in the Superleague and brings a lot of experience and steel to the Sirens ranks, which could soon make her a fans’ favourite. The Storm have made the trip north with one win and one loss to their name so far. They edged out the Celtic Dragons in round one before losing out, at home, to near rivals London Pulse 51-50 in round two.

That match was just on Monday night and the Sirens, who last played six days ago, will look to take advantage of any lethargy from the visitors.