Meon merry on all fronts

Meon 4, front row, left to right: Laura Wright, Helen McCusker, Amy Marchment; Back row: Caroline Brown, Zoe Turvey, Helen Munday, Katie Luff, Vickey Ferguson; not pictured: Steph Britton, Demi Whelan
Meon 4, front row, left to right: Laura Wright, Helen McCusker, Amy Marchment; Back row: Caroline Brown, Zoe Turvey, Helen Munday, Katie Luff, Vickey Ferguson; not pictured: Steph Britton, Demi Whelan
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The good times keep rolling on for Meon Netball Club.

The Portsmouth-based outfit may have been established for half a decade but they surely could not have enjoyed many seasons as successful as their last campaign.

The club has four teams which cater for a range of players, from ‘back to netball’ to regional-level players.

Meon 1 regional squad finished as runners-up in their first campaign in the netball south regional league, losing just two matches, while Meon 4 were promoted to division four of the Portsmouth League.

Off the court, Meon have gained their silver Club Action Planning Scheme (CAPS) accreditation and won outstanding netball club at the recent Goalden Globe Awards.

The regional squad enjoyed a string of fantastic wins against some very good competitive teams.

They included a 51-16 demolition of MK Netters Diamonds, a 64-31 success against Sussex NRG Pumas and a 47-35 triumph over CD Phoenix.

New players Louisa Cole, Sarah Butler and Kelly Brown featured heavily in a new attacking line-up, while Cara Plumridge and Lyndsay O’Connor came into the regional team from Meon 2 to excellent effect.

Meon 1 head coach, Debbie Laycock, said: ‘To finish second in the regional league in our first season is an exceptional achievement.

‘Division three of this league is the most competitive it has been for a long time so we did not have an easy time of it.

‘All the players worked their socks off. It was tough for them in a very new line-up but they deserve their success.

‘We need to build on this foundation, produce more consistent results and kick on from here.’

Due to Netball South reorganising the league, Meon will not be promoted, despite gaining second place, but hope to continue their success next season.

The club have many other reasons to celebrate, though, as – just nine months after achieving their bronze award – they have just received their silver CAPS accreditation.

This scheme is built around a set of core criteria which ensure that accredited clubs operate to a set of consistent, accepted and adopted minimum operating standards for their junior sections.

Coach Laycock said: ‘To also claim our silver CAPS and to win outstanding netball club at the Hampshire Goalden Globes Awards last month is a tremendous achievement.

‘We look forward to going through to the South Region Goalden Globes Awards next month.’

Other winners from the ceremony went to Meon player Anna Howson for ‘outstanding contribution to netball through delivery in the education environment’.

Howson said: ‘It was a fantastic evening and lovely to be surrounded by so many inspirational people. I feel privileged to have won the award.’

Meon will continue their training and playing in their local leagues over the summer, ready for the regional league to start in September.