sports gazette

EXCLUSIVE: Can England netballer Joanne Harten continue her impressive form?

Published: 29 Nov 2016

Star shooter Joanne Harten has been in fantastic form recently, picking up the MVP award at the Fast5 World Series in Melbourne.

Harten will be hoping to continue her rich vein of scoring as the Roses host Jamaica at the Copper Box Arena in the Vitality Netball International Series opener on Tuesday 29th November.

She scored 52/59 when England last played the Sunshine Girls at the 2015 World Cup but admitted it would be hard to replicate such impressive statistics during the series.

She told Sports Gazette: "Probably not - I'd had enough by that point and just starting shooting from anywhere!

"Obviously as a shooter, you want to aim for a flawless shooting record but we'll see.

"We'll work our way into the series and see how it goes."

England have been in camp for over a week ahead of the opener and Harten is feeling confident.

She said: "There's a really upbeat mood in the camp. Training's been going really well, really positive steps forward so can't wait!"

However, the Roses defenders will have to reckon with Jamaica's towering shooter Jhaniele Fowler-Reid.

Harten said: "She's a weapon. She's been playing over in New Zealand and has been one of the best shooters in that competition for a few years now.

"She'll be a force to be reckoned with and something we're going to need to try and stop.

"A lot has changed between both squads though - new faces in both - so it'll be interesting to see how we face off against each other."

The Copper Box Arena is sold out for the series opener and Harten is relishing the occasion to put netball on the map once again.

She said: "It's a really iconic venue from London 2012 and it's great that netball has a chance to showcase itself in an arena like that."

Before Harten can take to the court though, she has to stick to her pre-match routine and eat the same snack as always: peanut butter on toast (brown, of course) and a glass of orange juice.

The match is available to watch on Sky Sports Mix and @SportsGazette will also be reporting live from the Copper Box.

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