A team call on Fareham ace

Fireflys Black

Emerald well rewarded after polished display

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Yasmin Parsons is preparing to test herself against the world’s best players after she was called up to the England A squad.

The Fareham talent, 20, has been picked for friendlies with Wales, Jamaica, New Zealand and England this month.

The fixtures begin on Friday, January 17 at Wembley Arena and run alongside the national team’s tri-series with the Kiwis and Jamaicans.

Parsons has progressed to the A side with a number of her under-21 team-mates who contested the World Youth Championships in Glasgow in August.

She is excited at the prospect of rubbing shoulders with England heroes, such as Sara Bayman and Rachel Dunn.

But the Weston Park Blades and Team Bath star is also relishing the chance to test herself at the highest level.

Parsons has already represented England at under-17, 19 and 21 level.

She skippered the under-17s to glory at the European Championships in 2009 and has also led the under-21s.

But the latest feather in her cap has topped the lot.

Parsons said: ‘This is a huge achievement for me to finally be stepping into a Test series representing England seniors. I am delighted and honoured – especially to be working alongside senior internationals such as Sara Bayman and Rachel Dunn.

‘I will also be joining up with some of my fellow under-21 team-mates and Mia Ritchie, who I play with at Weston Park Blades.

‘I work well with her as a mid-court partnership.

‘I will use this opportunity to learn so much about the opposition but also about myself at that level.

‘After all, we are playing the world’s best. I’m so excited!

Parsons has been in action for Weston Park Blades in the National Premier League division one.

She is also gearing up for the Superleague campaign – which kicks off next month – with her Team Bath outfit.

And the Fareham star is sure a return to the red and white of England will boost her skills in the domestic arena.

Parsons said: ‘This will give me a taste of what it’s like to play at that level.

‘It will also develop me as a player, leading into the Superleague season.

‘I just can’t wait to wear that red and white dress again.’

Parsons’ selection comes on the back of impressive displays at the World Youth Championships, where she played every game for the under-21s before defeat to Australia in the semi-finals.

She narrowly missed out on a medal after defeat to Jamaica in the third-place match.

Parsons said: ‘To be selected was an honour and something that is so rare.

‘We knew it was going to be an exciting journey but also a challenging one due to opposition.

‘It was an experience I will remember for the rest of my life and hopefully one day I can wear a medal round my neck.

‘It has made me the player I am today.’

England A play England on Friday, January 17 at Wembley Arena before taking on Wales at the same venue the next day.

They then move to the Olympic Park’s Copper Box Arena to play Jamaica on Monday, January 20 and New Zealand 24 hours later.