Fran Williams will be writing a monthly column with The Netball Show throughout the 2019 season.
In this first edition she discusses her time at the Quad Series and the start of the Vitality Netball Superleague season with Wasps Netball.
*Published before London Pulse fixture on Saturday 26 January
What a crazy couple of weeks.
Starting the Wasps Netball season with a win and then the incredible experience to be a part of the England squad for the Quad Series this month.
To be given the vote of confidence to play alongside a squad of this calibre was an amazing opportunity – it’s definitely been a highlight of my career so far.
It feels like a huge step up. The preparation that goes into each game off the court with regards to recovery, nutrition and video analysis allows us to maximise our performance on the court.
This year’s Quad Series has had its highs and lows, but I feel extremely privileged to have played my part in it. I believe most people would agree it’s been the best Quad Series yet.
Sharing the court with some of my idols feels like a reward for all of the hard work I’ve put in over the years. It’s a great feeling to know that your performances have been recognised.
We started off with a solid win against New Zealand and had a really exciting game against South Africa.
It was goal-for-goal throughout and it could have gone either way, but South Africa had the edge on the day.
Then came the match against Australia. The way we picked ourselves up in such a short amount of time, to come back and beat the world number one after a tough loss really shows the resilience in our squad and our will to win.
I was given an opportunity to come on at a crucial part in the game and with big pressure, but the support of my teammates helped me to go on and show what I can do.
It was my first ever win against Australia, and one I’ll never forget. The aim now is to keep challenging for a spot in the England team, and to be in the mix for World Cup selection.
I’m a young player, so I’ve just got to keep working hard, focus on my own game and give everything for Wasps this season.
Wasps feels like a second home to me now. I’ve definitely grown a lot since joining and I think the club has grown too.
It’s unique for a club to feel like such a family. Playing alongside the likes of Hannah Knights and practicing against Rachel Dunn means I’m always learning here.
Starting from scratch as a new club and reaching the point we are at now is a huge accomplishment.
Mel Mansfield has had a huge role in that. She pushed us really hard this pre-season, and to have that first win of the campaign against a really strong side eased the nerves.
Up next is London Pulse, which should be a great game. It will be really exciting to come up against a brand new team.
They’ve got some standout players and we’ll have to try our best to combat that.
After that we’re back home at Ricoh Arena for another interesting tie against Saracens Mavericks on Monday 11 February.
Mavericks will be real title contenders this year and the atmosphere that will be generated by our fans makes this a massive fixture for our first game back.
I’m really looking forward to seeing some familiar faces at Ricoh Arena on the night.
Season memberships are on sale now, and you can get individual tickets for our opening six games too from www.waspsnetball.co.uk.
Your support is so important to us,
Allez, Allez, Allez