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April 10th, 2022

Men's Update

Since our last newsletter, the world of men's netball has continued to progress at an exponential rate. We have seen existing clubs recruiting new players, holding open days and hosting trials, and we've also seen new clubs popping up all around the country. It fills us with hope and joy as an organisation to see men's netball growing at such a rate, across every level of the sport!

At the highest levels of the men's game, we saw a host of fantastic events and progression points including, but not limited to:

  • Knights and Manchester Spartans attended the Rise Again festival (the biggest VNSL preseason tournament ever), and put in good performances amongst a host of strong VNSL teams, with Knights eventually finishing 5th amongst the 12 teams.

  • London Giants took on Northern Titans as a curtain raiser for the VNSL opening weekend up in Birmingham in-front of almost 2,000 fans. It was incredible to see men's netball given this stage and publicity.

  • Many teams have been playing elite level training games and acting as training partners for VNSL clubs before & during the season.

  • England Men's Trials were held in London with over 70 athletes putting in incredible performances and making our elite level selectors' jobs very tough. From this, the England Thorns men's national squad was selected, and the standard of our more junior players was so strong we were able to select an England Trailblazers U23 squad, with players across both teams being selected from 9 different clubs. This was a huge step forward for men's netball in this country. A special mention must go to Caroline S who was the first to nominate 'Thorns' as the name for our England men's team, and was followed by plenty more nominations of the same title afterwards!

  • Manchester Spartans took on a men's invitational team in a curtain raiser for the Manchester Thunder v Severn Stars game in Belle Vue in Manchester, continuing to raise the profile of our game.

On the horizon, we have a number of exciting up and coming events for men's netball:

  • On 28th May, the battle of London v Leeds is underway as Knights take on Northern Titans as an exciting curtain raiser ahead of London Pulse facing Leeds Rhinos at the Copper Box Arena Stratford in the VNSL. 

  • Men's exhibition/friendly matches across all of our clubs will be taking place over the summer in the lead up to EMMNA Nationals in August.

Keep your eyes peeled over the coming months, as there is so much more in the pipeline for men's netball!

Mixed Update

There's lots going on in the world of mixed netball, with plenty of exciting opportunities to show off our fantastic sport up and down the country. A couple of the notable highlights are below...

Planning for our England Mixed trials is currently underway, and will be held in Belle Vue in Manchester on 22 May, from 12-6pm. If the England Thorns trials is anything to go by, this event will be a great success, bringing a new elite tier to mixed netball in England.

Warwick Mixed Netball Club are hosting a mixed netball tournament on 2 July, for 6 universities (including Warwick), which will be held over one full day, from 10am-5pm. This tournament will act as a pilot to help BUCS and other universities to recognise the interest and the demand for mixed netball amongst universities in England. We have already seen keen interest from Bath, Warwick, UCL, NTU, Royal Holloway and Birmingham. A few other clubs who have expressed interest and may also get involved are Exeter, UEA and Surrey.

The tournament will have a group stage, with two separate groups. The top two teams leaving the group stage will then compete in the knockout rounds (semi's and final), as well as a wooden spoon competition. The tournament will be less formal than an official tournament as it is being run by Warwick Mixed Netball Club, but it is still supported by EMMNA and BUCS. The tournament director will be the secretary. ofWarwick Mixed Netball, and umpires will be obtained from the women's game.

Oscar, our EMMNA Mixed Development Officer, is the tournament co-ordinator at Warwick, so there is clear support from EMMNA within this tournament. We have also had a meeting with BUCS officials Neal and Sasha, who are willing to give advice and guidance, as well as possibly look into publicising the event - something we are very excited about!



April 10th, 2022

This year, we signed a partnership with England Netball, and through this we were able to set up a subscription to EMMNA through their platform ENgage. Here are some FAQs on what you may find when using ENgage:

Why is there a fee to trial?

EMMNA is a non-profit organisation, and the fee charged for each player covers the administration for the event.

Why must I be a member of England Netball to trial for the EMMNA Men's or Mixed National teams?

England Netball is the national governing body (NGB) for netball. EMMNA is authorised to operate elite mixed netball and for the trials event to remain authorised, all participating players must have NGB membership as well as the association membership.

Why must I be a member of England Netball and pay the EMMNA Player Subscription?

The season runs from 1 September to 31 August, so the £35 EMMNA player subscription fee payable is for any player that participates in any EMMNA authorised activity such as trials, leagues and national tournaments. It covers the general administrative costs that enables the organisation to plan these events. There is a separate cost charged for each event.

Hopefully these FAQs help answer any queries you have, however if there is anything else you need to know or would like clarification on, please contact Taryn Moss at

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April 10th, 2022


The 12th April 2002 saw the release of ‘Bend It Like Beckham’ in British cinemas. Audiences across the country were inspired by the story of a young girl overcoming/battling against gender and cultural stereotypes to pursue her dream of wanting to play football, traditionally a sport viewed as being for boys.


Fast-forward 20 years and the landscape for female football has changed dramatically - the sport at the elite level has been professionalised domestically, the Women’s Super League has a regular slot on terrestrial TV featuring highlights and analysis of games, and participation and spectatorship has sky-rocketed, as have the emergence of female footballing role models for young girls to look up to. I have since watched many interviews with England Lionesses and one consistent theme is that they had all experienced similar challenges as depicted in the film ‘Bend It Like Beckham’. They spoke of growing up playing football in the playground at school and with siblings at home, but of limited opportunities to play competitively and often having to be the only girl playing for boys’ teams. Additionally, the FA rules at the time prevented girls from playing with boys past the age of 12 so many had to try and find alternative teams/clubs and some even stopped playing altogether for a short period of time.


The parallels to boys aspiring to play netball are clear for all to see and there are similar barriers as we seek to establish our footing/position in a sport predominantly played by women and girls. The recent change in the mindset of the World Governing Body, World Netball, to include males in their latest strategic plan and talk about ‘embracing boys’ and men’s participation’ is hugely significant but there is still a long way to go. We have been collaborating with our colleagues from AMMNA and NZMMNA (both organisations have been in existence since the 1980’s, considerably longer than EMMNA) to discuss and share ideas of how we can work together to try and make netball what it should be, for ALL! We have also been liaising with staff/researchers at Brunel University who were involved in conducting research on behalf of the FA into mixed gender youth football, which resulted in the age limit for boys and girls being allowed to play together recently being raised to 18 years old. Interestingly, Denmark has no age limit as for mixed gender football, Holland and Switzerland have an upper limit of 19, and Germany and Italy have upper limits of 17.


We’re still in the planning stages but keep your eyes peeled for forthcoming announcements of a proposal for a national boys and mixed competition for schools and clubs due to take place next season, as well as the recruitment for members of a Youth Advisory Group at EMMNA. It is apparent that visibility is key, and the recent publication of the England Men’s Thorns and Trailblazers National squads is an opportunity for us to create male role models for young boys up and down the country and to start telling the stories of their journeys. Who knows, maybe we will have a netball sequel to the critically acclaimed film of 20 years ago……

I propose/my money’s on ‘Finish It Like Firminger’!


April 10th, 2022

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Stamford and Rutland Junior Netball Club (SRJNC) was formed in 2017. It now welcomes over 200 girls to training sessions weekly, and runs a popular junior netball league which hosts several clubs and tens of teams across six age groups. The club is passionate about sport for all, and has adopted England Netball's Bee Netball programme, which offers a framework for children to get a great start in life, through learning valuable social, emotional and teamwork skills. Bee Netball welcomes both boys and girls of primary school age to training and in competition settings.

However, there is a dilemma for clubs offering the Bee Netball programme. What happens to boys when they reach secondary school? Despite its huge intake of children, SRJNC has very few male members within the Bee Netball programme. This is likely due to the wide availability of other opportunities - the Stamford and Rutland area offers lots of sports - as well as the perception that netball is just for girls. Football, rugby and basketball clubs are well-established, and while many of the clubs are inclusive, participation is predominantly made up of boys.

So do boys need the option of netball too? Is there a need to consider male participation at all? Should clubs like SRJNC protect the unique female-focused foundation of netball? While most of SRJNC's male participants dropped out of the sport before they reached secondary school, one member stayed on. Calum L is 13, is tall, athletic and plays competitive football and rugby... but he loves netball too! His football team has female members, but he's repeatedly been told there's no place for him on the netball court. He wants to train and get better at the game, and his team-mates have welcomed and supported him, but with the exception of a few friendly games, he's never been allowed to join them in a competitive fixture.

In 2021, England Netball and England Men's and Mixed Netball Association (EMMNA) announced a new partnership with an aim of developing and growing the male game in England. There are now 20 clubs established with men's and mixed teams in England, with nearly 20,000 men playing fortnightly and many boys playing netball regularly at primary school. England Netball has pledged to support EMMNA with the development of the club, league and national structure for the men's game, and through consultation with England Netball members, it was clear that there was a desire for men and boys to be welcomed into the game, and to play a greater part in the future of what has been a traditionally female sport. England Netball and EMMNA believe, through this partnership, it is possible to grow the game whilst protecting the sport for female participants. It's a useful insight for clubs with boys that wish to stay on with their clubs after primary school.


Tina Sayers is co-founder of SRJNC, junior league secretary, and club coach, as well as Calum's mum. "Cal kept asking me if he would ever be allowed to play in our netball league, and I was starting to question why he couldn't. He trains with the girls and they've welcomed him into the group. He loves to play and he's a good player too. I saw a story about a male netball player, Chris Green, a semi-professional American footballer who has recently reached 50 caps for the men's netball team Knights. I contacted Chris on Facebook to ask for advice about Cal, and he put me in touch with EMMNA's Director of Development Jen Walsh. It was amazing to speak to Chris and Jen, and to realise the amount of work that is being put into the development of the men's game, and the incredible impact that this is having on the women's game, with men now being frequent training partners for our VNSL teams as well as the England Roses team. I began to challenge the idea that boys couldn't play competitively past junior school, researched news articles on mixed netball success from Australia, and found published studies that suggested boys and girls development was similar until well into their teens. Our club committee had always welcomed Cal to training, and they supported the idea of letting him play competitively, We have now made an official link with EMMNA as a provider of mixed netball, and from March 2022 we will allow boys that have been part of a Bee Netball programme to continue playing competitive netball on agreement with our league organisers. We don't expect this to compromise the experience of our girls, and will monitor this in the future to ensure that doesn't happen. In fact, we're excited to see this as a potential development opportunity for all of our players."

Cal's really excited to start playing competitively. His football team is scheduled to play on the same day as the netball club's sprint tournament, but he's adamant that he's going to play netball as soon as his football match finishes.


Why? To Cal, it's simple: "I just like playing!"


January 8th, 2022

What a weekend for Men’s netball with both the London Giants and Knights Men's Netball playing curtain raiser matches against England Development before the Vitality Roses took on the Jamaican Sunshine girls in Nottingham.


The first fixture of the weekend was London Giants, who came out all guns blazing with a strong start against the England Development side. Geoff Mackay (WA) was the lynchpin in attack for the Giants, with decisive and precise feeding into Damian Williams (GA) and Cy Lewis (GS) who continued their EMMNA Nationals winning form and flair.


The MVP was the always-impressive Jamal Nicholson in at GK/GD who combined seamlessly with Giant’s newest player Tommy Wiseman (GK/GD) who is certainly one to watch for the future. The two looked a very comfortable team, despite minimal minutes in the circle together, taking dramatic intercepts and blocking shots against the likes of Liv Tichine and Kira Rothwell. 


The London Giants were able to bring on their bench and give all members of their playing group court time, it was fantastic to see so many men given an exhibition opportunity. Giants were always in control of the game, with the final score 45-57 to London Giants.


The final fixture of the weekend was England Development taking on Knights Men's Netball, and it promised to be gripping from the very first whistle. Momentum swings from both teams saw the game continue in the closest of margins - tied at three quarter time, setting up for a thrilling final quarter.


Stand out performers were James (Jimmy) Thompson-Boston (GD) and Klem Speck (C and WD) who were hugely disruptive defensively against the England Development attacking end. Jimmy and Klem are training partners with London Pulse (alongside Lewis Keeling and James O’Connor) and it was a fascinating battle to watch against the likes of Rotherwell, Scholes, Rattu and Neal who are all contracted to London Pulse for the upcoming VNSL season. 


Ultimately, the experienced combination of Lewis Keeling (GS) and Chris Green (GA) proved to be too strong, with Knights pulling away in the last quarter, to seal the win 47-54 to Knights Men's Netball.


It was incredible to see such a display of netball, featuring two outstanding men’s sides competing against the future England Roses. What was most special was seeing the crowd on the edge of their seats watching the skill, athleticism and passion of our male netballers.



January 7th, 2022

Please find below a list of the clubs & regions we are currently working with to develop men's, mixed & youth teams across the country & beyond. More details for those already established can be found on our EMMNA Club Finder - all are welcoming new players! If you are struggling to connect with the right individuals or want some support in identifying the right club for you or your child, please reach out to and we would be more than happy to help you.

Greater London:

South East:

South West:

East of England:

East Midlands:

West Midlands:

North East:

North West:



  • Mixed: Glasgow University



  • Men's & Mixed: Guernsey Netball Association

Isle of Man:

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January 8th, 2022

Our Youth Development Officer Sophie Hansell sat down with Christopher Stanford from Chester Men's & Mixed Netball Club to find out more about the club and their journey so far... 


How/when did you start?

Chester has had a mixed netball social league for a couple of years now. The last season ran from May to August and a team of people got together to create Chester Men’s & Mixed NC to provide opportunities to continue playing in the off-season. After a month long social media drive, the club opened its doors at the end of September 2021 and has since welcomed ever growing numbers, leading to the development of two competitive squads.


How would you describe your club?

Chester Men’s & Mixed NC is an inclusive, developing, and competitive club. We have tried to embed and sustain a culture where everyone is valued. We feel it’s important that our social netballers get just as much from the sessions as the competing teams. We also recognise the importance of developing youth players as they are the future of our club and the sport.


What have you learnt along the way?

Firstly, running a club is a commitment - the key thing is to get the right team behind the team! Qualified coaches, umpires, safeguarding/welfare officer, team managers, etc.….coming from a developed league meant we already had access to a number of these personnel, but our social media drive also brought a new crop of prospective club members who were passionate and wanted to be involved. Secondly, netball is skilful! Learn the basics, trust the process and understand that you often learn more when you lose, than when you win.


 What would you say is your biggest achievement to date?

Our growth! We are a club based on our ethos and our pledge to inclusion is our biggest achievement. Alongside this, being able to gain support of local clubs and seeing them get behind us. 


Any advice for other new clubs?

As follows; * Make an ethos right at the start and try and stay true to this. * Find the right people to be involved behind the scenes. * Use social media to help promote your club/sessions. * Don’t be afraid to reach out to local clubs/players and coaches. * The more knowledge you have, the better. * Aim to be the best you - with enjoyment, the rest will come in time. * Trust the process. 


What are your next steps? 

We are looking forward to developing our social side and competitive branches in the New Year. We have fixtures in the pipeline with the Isle of Man and University of Warwick, as well as Premier League and top division teams in our area. Hopefully, this will put us in the best position to play some of EMMNA’s top teams in due course.

If your team would be interested in featuring in the next spotlight feature, please email



September 4th, 2021

On 7-8th August 2021, the inaugural EMMNA Nationals were held, kindly hosted by Nottingham Trent University. What. A. Weekend.


If you want to catch up on the livestream of any of the matches, visit here. You can also find The Netball Show's EMMNA Nationals Special podcast here, Netball Scoop's fabulous round-up here, and a wonderful piece on our Men's Player of the Tournament, 15 year old James Firminger, here.


Big congratulations to the eventual winners:

  • Men's Champions - London Giants, Runners Up - Knights Men's Swords

  • Mixed Champions - London Giants, Runners Up - South West Hawks

  • Men's Player of the Tournament - James Firminger, Spartans

  • Mixed Player of the Tournament - Manish Manoj, Warwick University

  • Rising Star of the Tournament – Solomon Wright, Nottingham Trent University

  • Lifetime Dedication Award - Colyn Gordon, EMMNA Invitational


For me though, the tournament wasn't about the winners or losers. It wasn't about the individual successes or the moments that teach you the most. It was about paving a way for the future. It was seeing new role models being born before our very eyes. It was knowing that the youth workshop and exhibition match were the most important elements. It was watching the CEO of World Netball, Claire Briegal, present the awards. It was feeling the buzz that wasn't going to be forgotten by anyone when the weekend was over.


One comment in our post-match feedback survey summed it up beautifully for me - hope they don't mind that I've paraphrased:


"Pre-tournament I was only there for purely selfish reasons: to play well, to win as many games as possible, and to showcase myself for England selection. I now realise that there is such a need to promote men's & mixed netball - so that young boys have role models, and to support our elite female netballers who deserve to be at the Olympics. I was very impressed by the family atmosphere, & loved seeing so many like-minded people being united by the sport they love.

As a PE teacher, I know realise the importance of breaking down stereotypes of netball being a girl's sport & about boys that play netball. I endeavour to make a positive change at the school I work at so that anyone, regardless of gender, can play the sport they love. I am going to try and add netball to the boys' PE curriculum"


What I am most proud of is the after-math of Nationals. It wasn't a stand-alone event, it was a beginning.


Since that weekend in August, the EMMNA team have been contacted by multiple individuals wanting to set up new men's & mixed netball clubs, and many existing established clubs wanting to now welcome men & boys to netball. Keep an eye on our club finder here to see all the new additions coming soon!


A big & heartfelt thank you to all our readers, members, players & supporters for helping us to open eyes, open minds & open doors to men's & mixed #netballforall 


The future is so bright & so exciting!



September 19th, 2021

In addition to the 8 men's teams & 6 mixed teams that entered our 2021 EMMNA Nationals, we have a number of established clubs now embracing #netballforall and looking to build men's and mixed teams, as well as new clubs setting up! If you are familiar with, or local to, the below clubs please reach out to them and support them in their journeys to becoming truly all-inclusive. If you want to discuss with us the opportunity to set up a new club, please don't hesitate to get in touch via our socials or email


North East North East Men's Netball

North West Spartans Men's & MixedChester Men's NetballBeechwood Netball ClubManchester Fury NetballMeerkats Netball Club Carlisle*, Burnley Netball Club*

YorkshireNorthern Titans Men's Netball

East MidlandsNTU Netball (open to community in addition to students)

West MidlandsRyland Netball Club*

East of EnglandNorfolk United Netball ClubSuffolk Rockets

South WestSouth West Hawks Men's & Mixed NetballExeter NetballCrossbow Netball Club

South East Netball Ninjas*

Greater LondonKnights Men's Netball ClubLondon Giants Men's & MixedAbbey Flyers Nomads Netball Club, Beacons Netball*


*Welcoming all under 18s



September 19th, 2021

Once again, the team at EMMNA would like to extend our thanks on behalf of all our members to the wonderful sponsors, without whom the tournament would not have been possible. We encourage you to take a look at the products and services from these brilliant organisations, and do let us know if you take up any of the discounts on offer! 


ecoffee cup - 15% off re-usable coffee cups using code EMMNA15

Gilbert - 20% off anything on the website (minimum spend £30) using code A_EMMNA20

Hybrid Pace

Netball Scoop

The Netball Show


Physique - 10% off CLICK HERE

Qtr Time Podcast



NTU Sport




May 7th, 2021

Whilst we continue to plan for the inaugural mixed (& men’s) tournament upcoming on 7-8th August being hosted by Nottingham Trent University, the hidden treasure chest of university mixed netball has been discovered with a whole suite of mixed talent ready-made. Those in touch with EMMNA already include the impressive Warwick Mixed Netball Club who have over 90 members and the University of Birmingham who run a campus league involving 30 different mixed netball teams of varying standards. Following a couple of fantastic meetings with the BUCS netball committee & England Netball, we hope to have some more exciting news and opportunities to share soon!

We spoke to Warwick (pictured above) and asked them to give us a quick update on who they are, and we loved what they had to say:

Warwick Mixed Netball club focuses on ensuring everyone feels welcome to the sport, even if they've never played before, which is the case for a lot of our members. We want to make netball accessible for all genders and abilities. We have been an established club for around a decade; last year, we went from a casually-competitive club (in which we won our University Intramural League) to having our own development team! We love seeing the improvement of our players each week - it's very rewarding for the captains. We are currently discovering more and more mixed teams and cannot wait to continue expanding our horizons when COVID restrictions allow. COVID put a damper on our league matches, but we are excited to jump back into the game. Follow us on @warwickmnc

A big thank you from EMMNA also goes to the more established ladies netball clubs opening their doors to welcome men to their training: Crystal Palace, Norfolk United, New Cambell and Exeter Netball Club as well as a massive good luck to the new mixed netball club, London Giants, just starting out. We are pleased to announce the “EMMNA Onboarding Pack - Introducing Men to Club Netball” is now available, should your club be interested in a free copy, please email Jen Walsh on

If you've read through this and felt inspired to get back into mixed, or just for those wanting to give social mixed netball a go for the first time, take a look at Leeds Jungle 7s – a sports & music festival that have recently included mixed netball in their line up!




May 3rd, 2021

Over the last few months as restrictions have lifted we have seen exactly what we hoped would happen post lockdown. Our existing men’s netball clubs have come back to life with passion and drive and with this resurgence many other clubs have awoken with men’s netball as a goal for their progression this coming year. The amount of support and engagement out sport is receiving at the moment is incredible. There is so much growth going on out there that we can’t hope to sum it all up in this newsletter and that in itself is a massive win for our sport.

With the EMMNA Men’s and Mixed National Championships planned for August, there is a lot to be done over the next few months but signs are incredibly good for a very well attended tournament.


With so many clubs planning their roadmap to nationals here’s some of the highlights from around the clubs:

Knights (London)

Knights continue to make big steps forward for men’s netball with a host of initiatives.

Multiple players from K1 continue to train twice a week with VNSL clubs London Pulse and Severn Stars. 

A team made up of Knights players from all three squads was invited to and is playing within the high-level Middlesex Premier Division.

Knights continue to run training sessions as they build towards their third annual open trials on the 26th of June in London (register here). 


Northern Titans (Yorkshire) 

Titans go from strength to strength as they continue to put up great results within the West Yorkshire League that they had their history making invitation to take part in during the relaxation of the restrictions mid lockdown. Reach out to them