London Pulse eager to start Super League campaign well following pre-season success
PUBLISHED: 14:00 20 December 2018
With England Netball winning team of the year and sporting moment of the year at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards on Sunday and London Pulse winning both matches in their pre-season fixtures - netball has firmly put itself on the map in 2018.
Pulse cruised to back-to-back victories in a showdown on Saturday against Severn Stars and Celtic Dragons at the Copper Box Arena.
England and London Pulse captain Ama Agbeze said: “Football came home this year, and we hope that netball came home too.”
London Pulse played their final warm-up matches of 2018 before they look to start their first season in the Vitality Netball Super League in January.
Celtic Dragons and Severn Stars travelled to Stratford looking to stamp their mark on the newcomers, but it was Pulse that prevailed.
Pulse played Celtic Dragons in the first game and saw their rivals take an early lead as they made a slow start.
The hosts were 9-7 down after the first quarter but Pulse came back strong, with a few crucial interceptions by the defence and some great shooting seeing them take a half-time lead of 20-14.
There was no looking back as Pulse dominated the second half action and eventually ensured an early victory against the Dragons by a 36-28 margin.
In the second match of the day Severn Stars looked to keep the pressure on Celtic Dragons and secured a 38-26 win, setting up a showdown with Pulse.
And in a nail-biting final match that went right down to the wire, with the score never more than two goals apart as both teams gave it everything, it was London Pulse who were victorious.
Following their 33-31 wing attack Ash Neal said: “Its great to get a win. We are a very young team and have not had a huge amount of game time.
“This will boost our confidence but there is lots to still work on before our first match.”
London Pulse come up against Severn Stars again in Birmingham on January 5 in their Super League opener, and then welcome Celtic Dragons back to east London for their first home match of the competition a week later on January 12.