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Double inter county success for netball teams

| Written by Neil Riddell

It was the first time both Shetland netball teams had defeated Orkney away from home. Back row (from left): Sarah Grogan (holding daughter Caitlin) Clare Farmer, Bethany Anderson, Kayti Jeromson, Shelley Sandison, Debbie Smith, Natalie Constable, Claire Morris, Vicki Smith, Louise Moar, Ann-Marie Goudie and Rhianne Johnson.Front row: Sanna Aitken, Karen Bannister, Ava Sim, Kirsti Leask, Kim Johnson, Victoria Duthie and Maisie Unsworth. Photo: Mark Harcus. It was the first time both Shetland netball teams had defeated Orkney away from home. Back row (from left): Sarah Grogan (holding daughter Caitlin) Clare Farmer, Bethany Anderson, Kayti Jeromson, Shelley Sandison, Debbie Smith, Natalie Constable, Claire Morris, Vicki Smith, Louise Moar, Ann-Marie Goudie and Rhianne Johnson.Front row: Sanna Aitken, Karen Bannister, Ava Sim, Kirsti Leask, Kim Johnson, Victoria Duthie and Maisie Unsworth. Photo: Mark Harcus. SHETLAND’S netballers enjoyed a double triumph in Kirkwall at the weekend, with both the A and B teams winning on visiting territory in the inter-county for the first time.

The two teams won their matches at the Pickaquoy Centre, both by an identical margin of 52-25, on Saturday afternoon.

Joint team captain Maisie Unsworth said it had been a really successful weekend and she was “proud of the whole team and all the hard work everyone has put in”.

Nineteen players travelled as part of the overall squad and everyone enjoyed some time on the court.

Maisie said both sides’ attackers were on form, with goal shooter Kirsty Leask winning player of the match for the A team, and goal attacker Debbie Smith chosen as the standout performer in the B team match.

Shetland's victorious netball players following Saturday's 52-25 victory.  Back row (from left): Shelley Sandison, Claire Morris, Bethany Anderson, Kim Johnson, Karen Bannister, Ava Sim. Front row: Kirsti Leask, Sanna Aitken, Maisie Unsworth. Photo: Mark Harcus. Shetland's victorious netball players following Saturday's 52-25 victory. Back row (from left): Shelley Sandison, Claire Morris, Bethany Anderson, Kim Johnson, Karen Bannister, Ava Sim. Front row: Kirsti Leask, Sanna Aitken, Maisie Unsworth. Photo: Mark Harcus. There were “big celebrations afterwards”, with the team enjoying a meal with their Orkney counterparts, which Maisie described as “a really good social event to get both of the teams mixing".

Both the A and B teams got the better of Orkney on home soil last year too, but by narrower margins, and Maisie said the team’s successful run in this season’s Scottish Cup had played a part in their strong performance.

“Playing on the mainland and having more games to work together as a team, against different opposition, has helped,” she said.

“We’ve got a really strong squad, the depth throughout both the A and B team has been really good this year.”

This weekend a pool of nine players travels to Aberdeen to take on Edinburgh-based opponents Onyx.

“They’re quite strong,” Maisie said. “I’m not sure how we’ll get on but we’ll give it our best. We’ve never progressed past the quarter finals – we possibly reached it once another year, but this is the first time for a few years.”

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