STRATFORD Thunderbirds ended the year celebrating victories in the Warwickshire County Cup and the progression of both their under 14 and under 16 squads to the regional round of the National Clubs competition.
This latter achievement is even more significant when ages are taken into account as the majority of the U16 squad were last year’s U14 County Cup winners, while this year’s U14 squad features a good number of U13 players.
The U14 squad were undefeated in this year’s County Cup campaign, with convincing winning margins to show for their efforts since September. Wins came against Henley (25-20), Copsewood (70-6), Lyndon Centre (48-19), Elmdon (41-25) and Leamington (63-6).
The U16s narrowly lost 33-29 to Lyndon Centre, but won against Leamington (55-30), Elmdon (59-22), Copsewood (50-13) and Henley (35-29).
Both squads will now go forward to represent Warwickshire at the West Midlands Regional competition, in which they will compete against the toughest qualifying teams from Birmingham, Worcestershire and South Staffordshire.
“It is a very exciting time ahead for both of these hugely talented Thunderbird squads,” said coach Molly Salmons.
“Both Kelly McCormack and I have worked closely with the girls to create a progressive training programme in readiness for this competition.
“We are very fortunate to have a group of dedicated, hardworking, young athletes and they deserve all of their successes so far. Hopefully in 2020, more will come their way.”