With just over 60 days to go until the opening of Trinbago 2023, Team Scotland’s Fast5 Netball squad are the first athletes selected to compete at the seventh Commonwealth Youth Games from 4-11 August this summer.
The athletes, aged between 15-18 years old, will compete for Team Scotland alongside athletes from the six other sports on the Trinidad and Tobago programme: Rugby 7s, Beach Volleyball, Triathlon, Athletics, Cycling and Swimming.
The concept of the Youth Games was created by Scotland in 2000 with the aim of developing young athletes and giving them an early experience of an international multi-sport environment. The event now has a proven track record of uncovering future champions at senior level, with athletes such as Hannah Miley, Eilish McColgan and Josh Taylor competing at Youth Games before going on to senior success.
Fast5 Netball makes its Commonwealth Youth Games debut at Trinbago 2023 and the 10 athletes selected will be sure to step up to the challenge and aim to make their mark on the international stage. Fast5 Netball is a modified version of the Netball game and, as the name suggests, it is fast and furious, end to end, with different scoring and tactics to the traditional format.
Team Scotland 2023 will depart for Trinidad and Tobago on the 1st August, ready to make the most of the first multi-sport Games experience and aiming to follow in the footsteps of previous Team Scotland Youth Games athletes.
Congratulating the athletes on their selection, Chef de Mission, Chris Purdie, said, “I would like to welcome all the netball athletes to Team Scotland and to congratulate them on their selection. These athletes have put in an incredible amount of work and effort to get to where they are and deserve the recognition they have earned.”
“The Commonwealth Youth Games is a fantastic opportunity for these young athletes to represent their sport and their country on the world stage and I wish them all the best in their preparation for the Games. I look forward to watching them compete with pride for Team Scotland at Trinbago 2023.”
Head Coach, Hayley MacKellar, said, “There are so many young talented players coming through the Scottish pathway, it has been exciting seeing so many of them in camp and in competition over the last season. We knew the selection of players for this competition would be tough. With Fast5 it’s a different style of game so your selection process for players is different to 7-a-side selection.”
“It’s important as a nation we are involved in more competition at all age groups. For these young girls, a competition this big will be a lesson for life and a part of their journey they remember for the rest of their playing days.”
Niamh Trainer, who has been selected to represent Team Scotland, spoke of her excitement for the Games, saying: “It’s exciting to be playing against some of the best people in my sport from around the World. I went to watch the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham last year and if the Youth Games has a fraction of the positivity and excitement of that, it will be an absolutely amazing experience.”
Teammate Becca McKelvie added: “When I found out I was a part of the squad, I was absolutely ecstatic, I had the biggest smile on my face and couldn’t believe it. For me, the most exciting part about fast fives is how fast and thrilling the game is, it is a unique style of netball that really pushes you to do your absolute best.”
Athletes from the six other sports on the programme will be announced throughout June.