sports gazette

Wasps Netball's Natalie Haythornthwaite proud to reach Superleague Grand Final

Published: 11 Jun 2017

Wasps Netball are aiming to end their debut Superleague season on a high with victory over Loughborough Lightning in the Grand Final.

Tamsin Greenway's team swept aside the challenge posed by Manchester Thunder, winning 63-48 in the semi-final.

Player of the match Natalie Haythornthwaite was ecstatic but somewhat surprised by the margain of victory and was full of praise for Greenway.

Speaking to Sports Gazette, she said: "To be honest, I think I'm still a bit shocked!

"We put out such a good performance and I'm so proud of everyone. 

"Tamsin had a really good game plan going into the game and we just had to make sure that we executed it.

"If you stick to the game plan, the performance will take care of itself and I think that's what Tamsin was trying to get us to do. 

"Really happy with 15 goal plus win and it was great to get everyone on court."

Wasps have undoubtedly made their mark on the competition in their first year and there's a clear mix of emotions in the camp - joy, determination and, to a degree, relief at their hard work paying off.

Haythornthwaite said: "Wasps' first time in Superleague - it's really exciting.

"I couldn't be happier to be with this team and to be with these girls.

"We've put in so much work behind the scenes, as has every other team, but I'm just so happy that we've got to this point and we're playing in the final!"

Wasps will be full of confidence going into the Grand Final both off the back of their semi-final performance and the fact that they inflicted Lightning's only defeat of the regular season.

But Haythornthwaite admitted preparation and tactics will be key. 

She said: "Obviously we'll have our game plan from previously but we need to do our homework and watch them and see how they did against Bath because they put out a good performance. 

"We need to make sure we've got a good game plan going into the final."

Haythornthwaite also paid tribute to Wasps' army of fans, who roared them onto victory at the Barclaycard Arena. 

She said: "When they introduced Wasps and then I heard the crowd, it was brilliant. 

"It's so nice that we have such a good fanbase at the Ricoh and it sounds like a lot of them have travelled here. 

"I really hope that they all come back out (for the final)."  

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