TURNFORD WIN YNPL
Turnford NC overcame their fiercest rivals Poole NC in the final of the ENG U13 YNPL Grand Finals and became the winners of this event for the first time in the competitions history. In what was anticipated to be a close final was the complete opposite with Turnford dominating through-out the entire game.
After the excitement of the U12 event earlier in the day it was now the turn of the U13 to showcase their talents in front of an excited audience. With so much quality on show this was going to be a great few hours of netball.
Northern Champions Ellesmere Port Youth got the competition underway against Eagles NC who had came 4th in the Southern league. This game was anticipated to be close and it was just that with both sides evenly matched through-out the first three quarters, but Ellesmere Port Youth in the 4th quarter showed that extra bit of quality to win the game 21-17. Wyre NC took on Sussex based side CD Phoenix in their quarter-final tie and were convincingly defeated 33-15 and Southern Champions Poole NC also despatched Kingston NC in comfortable fashion 54-12 to set up a semi-final game against Southern rivals CD Phoenix. The final game of the quarter-finals saw a good contest between Turnford & Grangetown NC, but the Hertfordshire side got the 29-17 win.
The 5th-8th play-offs saw relatively comfortable wins for Eagles NC & Grangetown NC who set up a 5th-6th play-off game between themselves. Wyre NC & Kingston NC would compete for the 7th-8th play-off position.
In the semi finals CD Phoenix were hoping to emulate the performance they had put together against Poole NC in the league where the pushed the Dorset side for large periods of the game. Starting well in this tie was going to be important and CD Phoenix failed in that respect and allowed Poole NC to dominate the opening quarters. Once you allow a team like Poole NC to get a good lead it never ends well and the final score was 33-13. Ellesmere Port took on Turnford in the other semi-final tie and this was closely contested for the opening two quarters with both teams trying to get the advantage they desired going into the final quarters of the game. A tactical change from Turnford turned the tie in their favour and they got the lead they desired which meant Ellesmere Port had to chase the game. In the end a 27-18 win for Turnford in really well contested tie.
We moved into the 5th-8th play-off finals and Wyre NC finally got a win after two tough opening encounters and claimed 7th place position after a 22-5 win over Kingston NC. In the 5th-6th play-off Grangetown NC & Eagles NC played out a great game on the show court. The tie went right to the wire and it was Grangetown NC who got the win by a single point, final score 26-25.
Now it was time to find out who our top 4 was going to be. Two heavyweight fixtures between four of the best teams in the country and they did not disappoint. In the 3rd/4th play-off Ellesmere Port Youth & CD Phoenix locked horns and entertained the watching spectators with one of the games of the days. Both these sides operate in localised areas and are a great example of what can be achieved when spending years developing a team from scratch and the talent on court was an example of the amazing coaching these players have been exposed to. The game was end to end through-out the 32 minutes of play and with 20 seconds to go Ellesmere Port Youth got the decisive goal to take the win and claim the 3rd place position.
One of the biggest rivalry's in grassroots netball was going to decide the top two positions in this Grand Finals. Poole NC & Turnford NC have been locking horns for years with Poole NC getting the majority of the wins through-out the years and with Poole NC defeating Turnford a few weeks previously in the league the overwhelming opinion was that it would be another Poole NC victory. As the game got underway Poole NC who normally start well were being dominated by a Turnford side who looked processed and were not putting a foot wrong. As the first quarter ended there was alot of work for Poole to do to stop this Turnford train. As the game progressed Turnford grew in stature and Poole NC could not cope with the intensity of the final and in the end had to accept this wasn't going to be there day. With seconds to go the Turnford bench were excitedly preparing for the celebrations and when the whistle blew for full time the arena erupted with celebrations from fans, players and coaching staff. Turnford were the champions with a 26-17 win
A massive thank you to everyone who supported the league through a very turbulent time for sport. Patient was definitely a must and in the end the league was a massive success and a great platform for these young netball stars to showcase their talent.
1st: Turnford NC
2nd: Poole NC
3rd: Ellesmere Port Youth
4th: CD Phoenix
5th: Grangetown NC
6th: Eagles NC
7th: Wyre NC
8th: Kingston NC
MVP: Olivia Pitt (Turnford NC)
All Star Team: Martha Robinson, Ella Hims, Martha Vujucic, Eloise Hillebrand, Olivia Pitt, Lola Vasiliou, Coco Williams