Mavericks tame Dragons as squad members put their hands up to be counted

Beth Ecuyer-Dale in action for Saracens Mavericks

Beth Ecuyer-Dale came in for praise from Saracens Mavericks' director of netball Kat Ratnapala after a win over Celtic Dragons. - Credit: STEVE PORTER PHOTOGRAPHY

Saracens Mavericks put on a full-squad show as they bounced back to defeat Celtic Dragons in the Netball Superleague.

Less than 24 hours earlier they had battled hard but came up short against second-placed Loughborough Lightning, losing 55-47.

They were no such problems though in Saturday's game with the Dragons as they ran out 59-39 victors.

And with the hardships of back-to-back games, it was some of the squad members who came to the fore.

Director of netball Kat Ratnapala said: "At one point I asked how many player of the matches I could have? Beth Ecuyer-Dale did a phenomenal job when she came on. She got the ball in her hands and really fed Britney Clarke and Chloe Essam. 

"She had a really good balance in the centre position. 

"Gabs Marshall was outstanding again and Britney did a fantastic job."

The eventual star player though was Essam with Ratnapala adding: "I’m made up for Chloe. She’s been working really hard in training this season, her work-rate is second to none." 

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The result keeps the Hatfield-based side in the mix for the top four and a spot in the end of season play-offs.

They remain fifth in the standings, two points behind Manchester Thunder in fourth and three behind third-placed Wasps.

Thunder provide the next opposition for the Mavs and Ratnapala knows every game from here on in will be vital for her side.

She said: "We took lots pf positives from the Loughborough defeat, lots of information for us to build on and I’m glad that we brought that into today. 

"Every single game is a crucial game for us and every time we step on court we just want to do ourselves and our fans proud. 

"We didn’t stick to our principles enough in the first half but the second was absolutely something to be proud of."

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