The first all-star picks for the forthcoming British Fast5 All-Stars Championship have been confirmed, with a host of England Roses players set to shine at The O2, London on September 23rd.
Manchester Thunder have announced Roses stars Helen Housby and Sara Bayman as their all-star picks. Their international team-mate Kadeen Corbin will lead the Team Bath charge in London alongside Tash Pavelin, while George Fisher and Natalie Haythornthwaite are the Wasps Netball All-Stars.
New Zealanders Erena Mikaere and Daneka Tuineau head the Team Northumbria squad, which also includes new signings Sophie Hankin and Scotland international Claire Brownie with the other four competing teams set to confirm their all-stars shortly.
“I’m absolutely thrilled to be able to bring two of New Zealand’s top players over to London for the Fast5 All-Stars Championship,” said Northumbria head coach TeAroha Keenan. “Both Erena and Daneka have a huge amount of experience at the highest level and they will be invaluable additions to our squad.”
Bayman captained Manchester Thunder to the Superleague title in 2014 and is thrilled to have the opportunity to don the famous Black and Yellow again: “I’m really excited to be back in the Thunder colours and I’m looking forward to what promises to be a great tournament. It will be a lot of fun for both players and spectators,” she said.
Housby added: “I’m super excited to be back in the Black and Yellow, even if it is just for a day. I’m looking forward to seeing some old team mates and coaches and playing at an amazing arena. I’ve never played at The O2 so I can’t wait for that day to come around.”
Wasps Director of Netball Tamsin Greenway said of her squad: “We’re going to the Fast5 All-Stars in September with one goal and that is to come away as winners. These players are Superleague champions and I believe this group can beat anyone when at their best.”
Team Bath Director of Netball Jess Thirlby said: “I am really excited by this fantastic squad and are looking forward to taking them into this new competition. It is a great mix of established players, returning internationals like Kadeen and our fantastic up-and-coming youth stars.”
The line-up for the British Fast5 All-Stars Championship is completed by Loughborough Lightning, Surrey Storm, Hertfordshire Mavericks and Severn Stars.
The British Fast5 All-Stars Championship will be broadcast live on Sky Sports and carries a ground-breaking £100,000 prize fund. Eight five-player sides will compete in a double elimination group stage for a spot in the semi-finals and the eventual winners will take home £25,000.
Introducing exciting new innovations such as a double-point Power Play, 5-point line and 12-minute matches, the British Fast5 All-Stars brings netball back to The O2 and allows teams to include two global All-Star players in their squad.
Tickets for the British Fast5 All-Stars Championship are available now from www.theo2.co.uk and start from just £20 with group tickets available priced from £60 for four adults. VIP Courtside tickets are available for £150 from www.fast5allstars.com.