From Emma Price, Plymouth Parkway Princesses Netball Club Captain.
I just wanted to say a huge thank you to you all for the really warm welcome you have given the Parkway Princess netball team since we joined your club and especially for the invitation to celebrate with you at your end of season do. Our team were riding high when we joined you in 2017 and we were promoted to Division One of the Plymouth & District Netball league as winners last season. It was a good fit becoming part of the winning mentality here at the club which is evident right through from your juniors to senior teams.
Anyway, where did this start ? I had this idea that it would be fantastic if we could promote netball from a slightly different angle. It’s predominantly a women’s team sport, so I thought ‘is there an established sports club we could join?’ Parkway immediately sprung to mind, they are a club my family have followed for over 20 years. My husband was captain and a part of the South Western league team for over 10 of them (and as he continues to remind me still holds the record for the most appearances for Parkway!!). I approached Gez to ask if he would be willing to sponsor us and it was fantastic news when he agreed to do so.
Thank you to Gez and the club for our fabulous new kit this season, we are well known within the league as the Parkway Princesses and play in the club colours of blue and yellow! It really does stand out and looks the part! And we have the same SWAZ training tops as the football teams.
I am not sure how many of you know about netball as a sport but its a great time to be talking about it off the back of the huge success of the national side winning GOLD at in the Commonwealth Games. England have always been very good at netball and been in amongst the top teams in the world for a number of years. We have a very hardworking committee here in Plymouth who have increased the participation in the sport hugely in the past few years and there are regular sessions you can attend for varying abilities over the city. Mixed netball is also growing in the city too. In January Parkway as a club took part in a mixed netball tournament up at Marjon. I contacted Gez earlier in the season about joining the club together for a charity event, however as the date drew closer I had to call on the old Parkway faithful to help field the teams as I only had 3 from the first team who came to join us. I haven’t seen Sam, Mikey and Connor since that day but I know the feedback from the rest of the boys/men that played was they could not believe how tough it was and how much they were all hurting for the week afterwards! I had a bit of trouble convincing a few of them that there are a number of rules to follow……including being three feet away when you are defending, different positions mean you can only play in certain areas of the court and you aren’t able to contest every decision the umpires make!! (Wade and Liam particularly). It was all for a great charity and look forward to another chance to come together as a club next year! Hopefully we can convince more of you to join us !! It will be a good idea to have a training session first though !!
An update on the Princesses now, we had a very successful competitive first season in Division One winning our first 5 matches, some emphatically by 20-30 goals. Our 6th game was a much closer encounter, a great match but we lost to Plymvic who were the eventual winners of the season. We won our next match and the we came up against the Toms, who we have history with! They appear to be our bogey team and are a team of giants, we however aren’t and we suffered our first heavy loss. It didn’t dampen our confidence and we were quickly back to winning ways week after week until we came up against them again! Frustratingly we couldn’t find a way past them, the week after we met Plymvic for the 2nd time and once again after an amazing game of netball we suffered a very close defeat. At this point we had 6 matches remaining and we knew that if we won all of those it would keep us right in the mix for promotion. And proudly I can say, we did just that – again with some fantastic team performances. It was looking favourable for us up to mid April when the Toms faced Plymvic who at this point were unbeaten, the Toms had to win that match otherwise we would have snuck into 2nd spot and the promotion spot. Toms managed to beat Plymvic, handing them their first defeat. The Toms then leap frogged us into 2nd. So, we finished in 3rd place, a great result for our debut season.
I am happy I know we are the best of the rest! We will certainly be pushing for promotion next season!
We have given Parkway a number of big headlines in the local paper during the year, whilst your often in the paper for your football, it was great to see so much coverage for netball too! We had our league presentation on Friday 25th May and received our trophy for 3rd place and also gave out our own top 3 players player award.
On behalf of my team, I would extend my thanks Gez, Mark and the rest of the club for agreeing to sponsor us again next season and hope we can bring more success to your club, we will certainly try! If any of you would like to see what netball is all about and come and support us, we play up at the Life Centre on Monday evenings. The new season starts at the beginning of September and the fixtures will be added to the club website.
Lastly I must congratulate you on the huge successes this season has brought, all the way through the club and to the first team on their promotion to next tier of football.
These were all dreams discussed when Liam was playing at this club and it is amazing to see that when people all come together with that same belief you can make it a reality. We look forward to being part of the future success. Enjoy a great celebration and Cheers everyone.
DIVISION ONE 3rd PLACE 2017-2018 season