NETBALL: Lloyd’s ladies make their mark

This Is Wiltshire: Devizes’ Emily Buller in action against Penryn on Sunday Devizes’ Emily Buller in action against Penryn on Sunday

COACH Nikki Lloyd hopes Devizes’ superb debut campaign at Regional League level can lay the platform for a glittering club future.

Devizes concluded their home commitments in Netball South West Regional League Three by locking down a fourth-placed finish with Sunday’s 68-38 victory over Cornish side Penryn at Melksham Oak School.

A magnificent maiden campaign saw Devizes bridge the gap between Moonraker county league netball and the regional standard, something that Lloyd believes bodes well for future years.

“The target was to stay in the division because this is the end result of three years of a lot of hard work. We had dominated the Moonraker League for a few years but the step up is significant and requires considerable commitment.

“We play matches as far north as Gloucester down to Cornwall and half of our squad don’t drive as they are not old enough.

“We’ve only lost two games in the league since Christmas against the top two so it’s a real marker about the direction the club is moving in and it’s given us a platform to make sure we can sustain that.”

Devizes are sandwiched between strong netball scenes in Bath and Swindon and Lloyd added: “Our aim would be to keep the majority of this squad together. Most of them are Devizes born, bred or developed and hopefully we can look to start developing more players.

“When I came to the club four years ago, there wasn’t really anywhere else to go (for players) but hopefully we can provide this level of netball for future generations.’’

Devizes visit Old Chelts to conclude their campaign on March 30.

  • The club is looking to recruit new players for the summer and new winter season and will run a Back to Netball course from April 27 for adults new to the sport or returning after a break.

Contact Lloyd at nikki_rider@hotmail.co.uk.

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