England Netball

England Roses begin their Quad Series campaign against world no.1s Australia in Brisbane on Saturday 26th August.

The last time the two sides went head-to-head the Roses were ahead after three quarters and dreaming of a famous victory but the tenacious Samsung Diamonds battled back to snatch a 47-46 win and the Quad Series title.

Tracey Neville’s side have been working hard in their full-time programme for the last six weeks and Jo Harten believes that teamwork and togetherness will be key for the Roses to get one over on their rivals.

She said: “I think in terms of toppling Australia it’s going to be a whole team effort – it’s not going to be any one player or any one unit.

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“We’ve been working really hard in our Roses programme over in England so it’s about going out there, having confidence, having belief and the whole team attacking.”

Harten played out in Australia for GIANTS Netball in 2017 so witnessed first-hand the strength and depth of the Diamonds.

And while she certainly won’t underestimate the challenge posed by Lisa Alexander’s side, Harten is confident that the Roses have some exciting tricks up their sleeves.

She said: “I think they’ve got a whole heap of intensity in that [Australia] team.

“They’ve got some real professional athletes and they’ve got some skilful unit combinations.

“In terms of our English team and our English Roses’ combinations, we’ve got some really exciting things to come.

“We can’t wait to hit the ground running in the Quad Series and really take it to these nations, especially Australia.”

The Diamonds will be without talismanic defender Sharni Layton and Harten admits to being disappointed at not having the chance to test herself against one of the world’s best players.

She said: “Hearing about Sharni’s withdrawal was a real shame in terms of being a shooter.

“You want to play against the best goal keeper in the world and Sharni’s certainly proved to be one of the top contenders for that position over the last few seasons.

“Hopefully she has all the time she needs to recover.

“In terms of the Roses and our attacking combination, obviously we’re going to be spearheading against them now.

“They’ve obviously got a bit more inexperience in that end so we’re going to do everything we can to get the win over them.”

The Roses will definitely be out to silence the home crowd and avenge February’s heartbreaking defeat as they seek to better their third-place finish from last time.

She said: “It’s vitally important we get off to a strong start in this Quad Series.

“We want to hit the ground running, we want to get momentum going and build confidence within ourselves as a team.

“So if we can get the win over Australia on their soil, it’ll be great and obviously give us a boost when we travel over to New Zealand for the rest of the series.”

You can follow the England Roses on tour via our official twitter account @England_Netball and watch every single match LIVE exclusively on Sky Sports.

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