Superleague-winning captain among netball coaches joining Team Bath Apprentice programme

23 September 2016

Former Team Bath Netball captain Asha Francis is among eight coaches from across the South West region to have been selected for the Team Bath Netball Apprentice Coach Programme for the 2016-17 season.

They were all identified as having the potential, drive, determination and commitment to work with players in a performance environment after a selection process that involved interviews and practical sessions.

The Blue and Gold coaching workforce is growing this season to cope with the demands of an expanded ten-team Vitality Superleague, as well as the National Performance League (NPL) U19 and U21 competitions plus the National Performance Futures League (NPFL).

Francis, whose county is Avon, has been working with Team Bath Toucans in National Premier League 1 for the past 12 months. The other selected coaches are:

  • Kara Gonzalez (Wiltshire) – University of Bath Netball Club
  • Emma Isaac (Avon) – Chair and Head Coach of Bath Cougars, Head Coach of Avon County Academy, Assistant Coach at SW Regional Academy
  • Leanne Lewis (Avon) – Team Bath Netball Club
  • Nikki Lloyd (Avon) – Team Bath Netball Club
  • Natalie Peperell (Cornwall) – Storm Netball Club
  • David White (Cornwall) – Storm Netball Club
  • Julie Woodman (West Devon) – Performance Pathway Coach at Plymouth Satellite Academy, Player/Coach with Marjon Bucs Netball Club, Coach with Saltash Netball Club and Plymouth Studio School

The programme is being overseen by experienced coach Denise Ellis, who has worked with Team Bath players across all age groups during her career.

“I am extremely excited to start work with the new cohort of Team Bath apprentice coaches,” she said.

“The group are a blend of experienced and developing coaches from across the region, who I am sure will bring energy and enthusiasm to the programme and ensure that Team Bath continue to develop future performance coaches in the coming seasons.”

This is the third year that the Apprentice Coach Programme has been run, in partnership with Netball South West, providing a number of coaches with their first important steps on the performance pathway.

Jess Thirlby, Director of Netball at Team Bath, said: “We have had a fantastic response to our Apprentice Coach Programme this year, seeing more coaches with a range of backgrounds from across our region.

“One thing they all share is a passion and drive to be involved in performance netball and to ensure our athletes at Team Bath have the best possible experience.

“I’m very proud of the work that Denise and the franchise continue to do for coaches, and we are very much looking forward to starting the journey with this 2016-17 cohort.”

Team Bath Netball have named eight members of their 2017 Superleague squad – click here to find out more.

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