The return of elite-level club netball is set to take place this weekend as a host of Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) sides compete in the Rise Again Festival.
The pre-season tournament features six of netball’s elite teams including Loughborough Lightning, Leeds Rhinos, Surrey Storm, Strathclyde Sirens, Manchester Thunder and Saracens Mavericks.
The Rise Again Festival will be lived streamed from 11.30 am on the 19th December, and will be the first visible match play of UK elite-level netball for nine months.
The first game centre pass starts at 12.00, with Loughborough Lightning and Leeds Rhinos taking to the court. Then, at 14.00, Surrey Storm and Strathclyde Sirens go head to head. And finally, at 16.00, Saracens Mavericks and current VNSL champions Manchester Thunder will bring this monumental and celebratory day to a close.
Manchester Thunder and Manchester City Council have put on the event following the cancelation of the VNSL in March 2020. The organisers understood that both the netball community and dedicated fans have unfortunately been deprived of elite and amateur netball this year, and wanted to do something to end 2020 in a positive way.
Hosted by television and radio presenter Lindsey Chapman, she will be bringing you a thorough and in-depth analysis and commentary from each game, as well as exclusive interviews with both coaches and players.
We are absolutely ecstatic to announce that #Manchester will be hosting 3 LIVE netball games on 19th Dec!🤩
You can live stream all 3 games for just £9.95 so contact your club for the link to buy your pass. 🙌
— Rise Again Festival (@RiseAgainFest) December 5, 2020
Lindsey Chapman said: “We’re already looking forward to you joining us and showcasing everything that is great about UK netball.”
The festival helps to amplify the importance of netball in the UK as Covid-19 continues to heavily impact the team sport in a variety of ways. Prior to the pandemic, netball was recognised as becoming the top women’s team sport in the UK and was undoubtedly thriving amongst female adults and young children.
Former Vitality Roses Head Coach Tracey Neville MBE quickly recognised these detrimental effects and created Neville’s Netball Army saying: “Last month I launched Neville’s Netball Army in a bid to recover the momentum we’d lost as a virtue of the global pandemic, and the response has been overwhelming, with people up and down the country registering their support for reprioritising and recovering women’s sport.
“One of the most interesting findings is that over 95% of people who signed up to the army said that they want to see more live-streamed events, and 85% of these people would pay to watch. This festival has proved to be the perfect opportunity to validate this and as such I’m delighted to be on the game-day commentary team.”
The Rise Again Festival has teamed up with broadcast and production specialists TeleVideo who shoot live UK netball games for Sky, as well as live streaming service Dacast in order to broadcast their matches live on the day, in what promises to be a very enjoyable event.
Live streaming passes can be purchased in advance for £9.95 which will get you over six hours of netball entertainment including all three live games, and the event can be streamed anywhere in the world.
To purchase your pass, please visit www.riseagainfestival.co.uk