Cumberland come up with a fantastic finish to ensure promotion in Mizuno League

Islington's Cumberland celebrate their promotion to Mizuno League Division Two (pic Cumberland NC)

Islington's Cumberland celebrate their promotion to Mizuno League Division Two (pic Cumberland NC) - Credit: Archant

Islington’s Cumberland Netball Club have gained promotion to the Mizuno National Premier League 2 for the second time in their history after beating Kent County 75-63 on Sunday.

The Camden-based club led from the front in a fantastic performance and can now finish no lower than second in the Division Three table, after an historic campaign.

September saw them win England Netball’s Outstanding Club of the Year award, as they added two new senior teams to their line-up due to high demand.

Local rivals Essex Open will join Cumberland in the higher level next season, where they will both face Kent-based Telstars and Surrey’s The Downs.

Head coach Polini Langi paid tribute to her team, saying: “I’m so pleased to have secured promotion with such an outstanding win. Each player has performed incredibly all season and I couldn’t be prouder of them.

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“I’ve been part of Cumberland for 12 years now and this season will certainly rank as one of the all-time best.

“I’d like to thank our assistant coach and team manager Amelia Brooks, our regular bench officials Jo Stevens, Paul Rothwell and Kim North who have travelled around the country to support us and of course the rest of the club for their continued support.

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“I’d also like to thank all of Cumberland’s junior players who have come to cheer us on over the season. They are the future of netball and if we can help inspire them, my job is truly done!”

Shooter Sophie Croft took the player of the match award and added: “I’m so grateful. This was a true team effort and the whole team pulled together as a unit to take the win.

“I moved to the UK last year and I’m so pleased I chose Cumberland as my new club over here. The team and coaches have been so welcoming and it has been a pleasure to be one of the captains. I’ve absolutely loved my first season here and sealing it off with promotion just makes it even better.”

England Under-19 player Kira Rothwell had 100 per cent shooting accuracy in the decisive match and said: “This has been a fantastic season and I’m so happy we’re being promoted. I’ve learned so much playing with this team that I’ll take with me through my career. I can’t wait for it all to begin again!”

Chair Jo Stevens said: “This outstanding victory caps off a year of success for the club. I’m extremely proud of the team and of Polini and Amelia for leading them to promotion.

“They are fantastic role models for the rest of Cumberland’s 300-plus members and for London’s young netball players.”

Assistant coach Amelia Brooks added: “The best piece of netball advice I have ever received is ‘It’s not the team with the best players that wins, it’s the players with the best team’.

“This team have been a real family this year and it shows through in their performance and dedication to each other. I am over the moon with this success – they really deserve the promotion.”

Trials for Cumberland Netball Club will be held in July for the 2018/19 season and are open to players of all levels, from beginner to international. Check for registration details.

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