After months of hard work behind the scenes, the 2021 Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) season is nearly upon us.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic, the decision was made to host the VNSL behind closed doors across two venues this season, to enable strict and consistent COVID-19 protocols to be in place for all games, supported by an extensive season-long testing programme across the league.
However, when the league returns on 12 February a new, landmark broadcast deal with Sky Sports will see every match shown across their channels to give the competition its greatest exposure to date.
Stars from all 11 franchises, including newcomers Leeds Rhinos, will have the chance to showcase their skills and demonstrate the strength of the league that was there for all to see during the Vitality Netball Legends Series.
That test series saw some of the finest international players compete for the VNSL All Stars against England, who also featured plenty of domestic talent.
And with that in mind, let’s remind ourselves of where all of the Vitality Roses and Roses Futures are plying their trade in the highly anticipated 2021 Vitality Netball Superleague.
Serena Guthrie – Team Bath
The Roses centurion returned to Team Bath, where she previously won three VNSL titles, for the 2019 season. Serena took a break from netball for the ultimately curtailed 2020 campaign but is once again ready for action in 2021.
Jodie Gibson – Saracens Mavericks
Jodie will be turning out for Saracens Mavericks after making the move there from Severn Stars before the start of last season.
Vicki Oyesola – Leeds Rhinos
Having departed Loughborough Lightning, where she won the VNSL Young Player of the Season award in her debut year, Vicki joins up with new franchise Leeds Rhinos.
Razia Quashie – Saracens Mavericks
After starring in the Legends Series, Razia will be an integral part of Saracens’ Mavericks defence having been voted their Players’ Player of the Season in 2019.
👏Quality work by Player-of-the-Match in the first test @R_Quashie_
— England Netball (at 🏡) (@EnglandNetball) January 24, 2021
Imogen Allison – Team Bath
Imogen has risen steadily through the ranks at Team Bath is now a key member of their squad, starting all of the games before the 2020 season was cancelled.
Gabriella Marshall – Saracens Mavericks
Preparing for her fourth year in Hertfordshire, ‘Gabby’ made the switch from Manchester Thunder to Saracens Mavericks in 2017.
Sophie Drakeford-Lewis – Team Bath
Nominated for the 2017 VNSL Young Player of the Season in her first year with Saracens Mavericks, she won the award with Team Bath in 2019 where she remains a vital player.
Kadeen Corbin – Saracens Mavericks
Kadeen is currently in her second spell with Saracens Mavericks where she turns out alongside her sister and captain Sasha.
Natalie Panagarry – Loughborough Lightning
Captaining Loughborough Lightning to two Grand Finals, Natalie enjoyed her best year with the franchise in 2019 and was also part of the VNSL All Stars squad that took on the Vitality Roses in January.
Beth Cobden – Loughborough Lightning
Beth made her return to court on home soil in the Legends Series after an injury-disrupted couple of years out in Australia and she is back in the colours of Loughborough Lightning where she left in 2018 after two Grand Final appearances.
Fran Williams – Wasps Netball
Beginning with Surrey Storm, Fran switched to Wasps Netball ahead of the 2018 campaign and lifted the title that year before losing the Grand Final in 2019.
Jade Clarke – Leeds Rhinos
The Vitality Roses’ most-capped player is still seeking new challenges as she prepares to represent new club Leeds Rhinos in the 2021 season after leaving Wasps Netball.
Yasmin Parsons – Surrey Storm
Yasmin won the 2013 VNSL title with Team Bath and moved to Surrey Storm in 2016 where she lifted the big prize once again in her debut campaign. She also played against the Roses for the VNSL All Stars in the Legends Series.
Eleanor Cardwell – Manchester Thunder
Representing Manchester Thunder for most of her career, aside from one season with Severn Stars, ‘Ellie’ played a starring role in the club’s 2019 VNSL triumph.
— England Netball (at 🏡) (@EnglandNetball) January 24, 2021
Laura Malcolm – Manchester Thunder
Following the same trajectory as ‘Ellie’, Laura briefly moved to Severn Stars in 2017 but has otherwise been a constant in that Manchester Thunder side.
Layla Guscoth – Team Bath
Prior to heading out to Australia’s Suncorp Super Netball league in 2019, Layla represented Team Bath for two years and is now back with the Blue and Gold for the 2020 season.
Halimat Adio – London Pulse
Beginning at Wasps Netball, she then represented Severn Stars before joining London Pulse ahead of the 2020 season and should continue to progress this year.
Amy Carter – Manchester Thunder
Amy made her Manchester Thunder debut in 2018 and was named U21 Coaches’ Player of the Year in her first full season at senior level.
Iona Christian – Wasps Netball
Having played for Severn Stars since the franchise’s inception in 2017, Iona swapped the south-west for the midlands to represent Wasps Netball in 2020.
Beth Ecuyer-Dale – Saracens Mavericks
Making her VNSL debut in 2017, Beth has established herself in the Saracens Mavericks’ mid-court.
Zara Everitt – London Pulse
Zara came through at Saracens Mavericks in 2017 and spent some time with Loughborough Lightning before landing at London Pulse ahead of the 2020 campaign.
Kira Rothwell – London Pulse
The youngster made her London Pulse debut in 2019 and after the 2020 season was cut short, Kira will be aiming to become an important player in 2021.
Jessica Shaw – Team Bath
Representing Loughborough Lightning for the past two years, Jessica returns to Team Bath for the 2021 season after spending the 2017 and 2018 campaigns with the Blue and Gold.
Olivia Tchine – London Pulse
Olivia has been a regular in the England youth teams for several years and has been developing impressively at London Pulse.
The following players aren’t on the Vitality Roses or Roses Futures programme
Summer Artman – Team Bath
Summer was a training partner for the Roses ahead of the Legends Series before facing her teammates in the matches as part of the VNSL All Stars and she’s entering her second season with Team Bath after returning to her childhood club from Saracens Mavericks.
Eboni Usoro-Brown – Team Bath
A member of the 2019 Vitality Netball World Cup squad, Eboni took a break from netball after the tournament and gave birth to her daughter, Savannah, but is now back with Team Bath for 2021.
Happy 33rd birthday to Vitality Roses legend @EboniBChambers 🙌
Wishing you all the best 🎉
— England Netball (at 🏡) (@EnglandNetball) February 4, 2021
Rachel Dunn – Wasps Netball
Another Netball World Cup bronze medalist, Rachel followed Eboni in taking a break from international netball but has remained active in the club game and is still with Wasps Netball as she pursues an eighth VNSL title in an illustrious career.
Head to the Vitality Netball Superleague website for fixture details.