Thunder, Dragons, Lightning, Storm, Sirens and Stars add to their squads ahead of 2021 season

The Vitality Netball Superleague is due to get underway in February
The Vitality Netball Superleague is due to get underway in February (PA)
21:05pm, Fri 30 Oct 2020
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Reigning Superleague champions Manchester Thunder have added Amy Carter, Laura Malcolm, Eleanor Cardwell, Joyce Mvula and Loreen Ngwira to their squad ahead of the 2021 season.

Carter entered the senior squad in 2018 after coming through the pathway and has since helped the side win the title in 2019.

On her return, she said: “I’m delighted to re-sign for my home team. We were so disappointed not to be able to see out the 2020 campaign which we had such high hopes for. So it is great to retain a good element of the squad to take it forward to the 2021 season.”

Malcolm and Cardwell will both enter their second season with the black and yellows as Malawi queen Mvula will also return to the fold. 

Shooter Mvula signed for Thunder in 2017 and on her signing, said: “I am grateful for the opportunity to represent Manchester Thunder in the Vitality Netball Superleague once again. 

"After the elation of becoming champions for the first time in 2019, it was disappointing not to defend our title this year. We will be back stronger for 2021 and I can’t wait to be back on court with my team-mates and hopefully for all our fans to see.”

Defender Ngwira will also remain with the side. 

She started all four of Thunder’s games during the 2020 season before the coronavirus pandemic halted the league. 

Two-time league champions Wasps have signed Gezelle Allison.

The Jamaican international said: “I chose to join Wasps, because of the opportunities and exposure I could get out of it, and I look forward to playing with a high-level team that has a reputation for winning. I see myself growing as a player and an athlete in their company.”

The star earned her first caps for her national side at this year’s Nations Cup. 

Head coach Mel Mansfield added: “I am delighted to announce that we have secured Gezelle -a new International talent for Jamaica who gained her first international caps in the Nation’s cup in January this year.”

Elsewhere, Jamaica’s Rebekah Robinson has re-signed for Celtic Dragons. 

She made her Superleague debut last year at the Fast5 All-Stars.

Robinson was also part of the squad who won bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. 

Wasps director of netball Tania Hoffman said: "It was deeply disappointing for Rebekah that the 2020 season was curtailed. She had worked so hard in advance of the season and was starting to make a real impact on our performances and on our squad.

“However, now she has recommitted for 2021, there is a fantastic opportunity for Rebekah to pick up where she left off. Her leadership on and off the court will be really valuable for us, particularly for some of our younger players. It is worth remembering that Rebekah is still only 25, yet she is such a strong presence within our set-up.”

Lauren Nicholls is set to return to Loughborough Lightning for a ninth season.

She took time out in 2019 to give birth to her baby daughter Maya and is now preparing for a season back with the squad. 

Nicholls said: “I’m really excited for season nine. It’s a really good squad coming together, so it’s good to see so many familiar faces from last season. I’m just really looking forward to getting back playing and seeing what we can do in the league.”

Hannah Joseph is also set to remain at the club. 

She joined the Midland-based side in 2011 and is excited to continue her career with Lightning. 

Head coach Sara Bayman said: “Hannah is one of our longest serving players in the squad and that loyalty is appreciated. She represents the proud history of this club as well as the exciting future. The knowledge and experience they have can drive this team forwards and be an example to other players of what it means to represent this club. “

Emma Magee is ‘thrilled’ to have joined Storm (SIPA USA/PA Images)

Northern Ireland international Emma Magee has signed for Surrey Storm. 

The star impressed during her stint in the World Cup last year. 

On her new signing, she said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be joining Storm this year. It has been a big dream of mine to play Superleague netball and I can’t think of a better club to be playing at. I love everything Storm stands for and I can’t wait to see what we can do as a team this year.”

Elsewhere, Scotland’s Strathclyde Sirens have added Bethany Dix to their squad for the new season. 

She has joined from Wasps where she spent two seasons. 

Dix said: “What made me want to move to Sirens was the ethos and the competitiveness within the squad to always strive to do better. The opportunity to work with Karen Atkinson, who’s a world-renowned wing attack, is only going to help develop my game as a wing attack too which I’m super excited about.”

Meanwhile, Severn Stars have revealed their 2021 squad. 

Liana Leota will return as captain and Nia Jones as vice-captain.

Head coach Melissa Bessell is set to welcome Jamaican international Malysha Kelly to the group.

"Everyone will look at this squad and say that it's the same, and that's because it is. I am really pleased to be able to have kept this squad together again," Bessell told Sky Sports.

"I think that it's really important to have continuity. We formed and built such a great culture as we came together as a new group last year. Then, being able to bring Malysha into the mix is wonderful because she is going to add so much to the group too."

Severn Stars Squad: Liana Leota (captain), Nia Jones (vice-captain), Georgia Rowe, Bethan Dyke, Paige Reed, Lucy Harris, Jane Taylor, Lucy Herdman and Malysha Kelly. Final player subject to contract clearance. Training Partners: Ellie Gibbons, Iman Thomas, Hannah Howl, Chloe Carchrie and Issy Eaton.

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