THEY have a bit longer to wait to get back on the court, but excitement is the buzz word at Northwich Sapphires Netball Club.

Leisure centres closed until April 12 at the earliest but netball will be allowed to resume outdoors from March 29 as part of the Government’s current plan for lifting Covid restrictions.

Indoor sports currently cannot resume until May 17 and Sapphires head coach Lauren Watson says the day they can return to the game they love cannot come soon enough.

“First of all we are all super excited to get back to netball and we know the girls are very keen too,” she said.

“Following England Netball guidelines, we are hoping to resume our activities after Easter.

“We follow England Netball guidelines for return to play. We have a Club Covid policy for all of our facilities, members and coaching team/volunteers that we adhere to.

“For example each age group has a designated Covid officer.

“It’s fair to say the buzz word for the club is a sense of excitement.

“We cannot wait to get back to training and playing games. Our club is a huge family environment and so many have missed their friends.”

Like with all sports, there will be a period of readjustment initially as netball gets to grips with operating in a Covid-secure way once again.

It may also be that some members may not feel comfortable returning to the club just yet – something Watson says will be taken into account.

“For those that are perhaps not ready to return, we do give all members the option to opt back in when they are comfortable to do so,” she said.

“The safety of the players is our priority.

“We hope the game will return to normal regarding the rule adaptations prior to Covid, and that we can all enjoy playing and taking part in netball once again.

“The club are huge fans of local Super League Manchester Thunder, and many cannot wait to be able to watch them play live again. You cannot beat that feeling of watching a live netball game.

“For now, we are looking forward to playing whatever shape the game is in and with any rule changes in place.

“The feeling of netball when on the court as a player and coach is priceless.

“The smiles, laughter and team spirit is not something you can coach, and we all love to see the youngsters enjoying themselves in a fun and safe environment.”