Bedford’s netball stars find new homes as Super League resumes

Ellie Rattu has signed for the Mavericks Image: England Netball

The new season of the Netball Super League is just around the corner and for one Bedford star, a new club brings with it a renewed hope of extending their England dream.

Ellie Rattu has made the switch from last year’s runners-up London Pulse to two-time NSL champions, Saracens Mavericks – based in Hertfordshire – in the hope of continuing a blossoming England career.

“As much as you hope, dream and you want things to happen, I didn’t think it would pan out for me that way with England”, said Ellie.

“It’s been amazing. It’s been such a great experience for me to learn and be thrown in the deep end and be in an environment that is constantly challenging and expecting more of you. 

“And I think that’s the same at the Mavericks, it is the same environment that I’ve got there. So, I think that’s only going to serve me well for the future.

“The dream is to keep playing for England and I’m hoping that this season with this great team will help me step in the right direction towards that.”

Rattu hoping for more court time

Ellie’s time on court dwindled for London Pulse last season, making only five regular season appearances as the Pulse lost to Loughborough Lightning in the final.

Rattu explained a desire to spend more time on court was part of what prompted her move.

She added, “It’s always challenging coming into a new team, but I feel like they’ve made me feel really welcome. 

“I feel part of the squad and I’m excited to see what we can build throughout the season together.

“There are a lot of reasons why I joined the Mavericks, and court time was definitely one of them. 

“It’s also just good to be challenged. Moving to a team like this is going to challenge me physically and mentally and give me something new to try and work through.

“We’ve got a great team, we’ve got high aspirations as well, so I’m not sacrificing any of the want for success.”

Dix signs for Surrey

Rattu isn’t Bedford’s only interest in the Super League, with former Strathclyde Sirens co-captain, Beth Dix making the move from Scotland down to Surrey to sign for the Storm.

Dix is familiar with the blue of the Storm as part of the elite pathway down south, but she has now re-joined the club, leaving the Sirens captaincy in Scotland.

Speaking to the Netball Super League media team, Dix is looking forward to returning to Surrey.

“I couldn’t be more excited about joining Storm for the upcoming season.

“I loved my time in the pathway set-up at Storm and I’m excited to be returning to try and achieve great things as a team and individually this year.

“It’s going to be a big change for me personally after living in Scotland for the past four years, but the best things happen outside your comfort zone and I’m ready to work hard on and off the court to make it happen.”

Bedford’s Beth Dix (Image: Sportsbeat)

Bumper day to start

Saracens Mavericks kick off their latest Super League campaign against last season’s bottom side, Cardiff Dragons in the bumper opening day of fixtures on Saturday 17th February where every team will start their season.

Dix’s Surrey Storm face a tough challenge as they face last season’s champions, Loughborough Lightning.

The Mavericks’ game is the last of five consecutive fixtures at the Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham, and Saracens will hope to improve on last season’s fifth place finish, missing out on the season-ending playoffs after winning eight of their eighteen regular season games.

The other matches, beginning from 11am are Severn Stars vs Leeds Rhinos, Strathclyde Sirens vs Team Bath and Rattu’s old side, London Pulse against Manchester Thunder.

The season openers marks the start of the 2024 Netball Super League season and takes place on 17 February, and you can purchase tickets here.

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