The first Adcote netball tour to Spain was an amazing opportunity and experience. The girls received some fantastic coaching, they worked hard in training sessions, met some wonderful people and also got the chance to enjoy some leisure time in the sunshine too.

Our Y7 to Y9 players headed off to the airport for La Manga, Spain, before the crack of dawn and arrived by lunchtime at a lovely hotel with great food and a fabulous swimming pool.

After acclimatising with some pool games, a spot of shopping, a lovely dinner and some overnight sleep the girls were transported to a sports venue and got stuck into their first training session, concentrating on defence.

Every one of them gave their all and took on board what they were being told. Player of the session went to Jennifer Lo who even surprised herself with her progress.

This was followed by some fun on the beach, beach netball and fitness training. Mrs Gardner reckons we’d all enjoy fitness training at school a bit more if Mr Walker could get a huge sandpit installed – ideally along with sunshine, some lapping water and a few palm trees!

After more time spent on the beach and some shopping our girls got stuck into karaoke later that evening. Once they had got everyone going it was not stop singing, with Camren and Airleia finishing the night off with ‘Baby Shark’ and the whole room sang along.

The next day the girls spent a whole day training at the sports centre. The first coaching session looked at use of space and decision-making in attack. Later the girls focussed on shooting.

Hot outside we headed indoors for the afternoon to concentrate on driving the ball forward and getting in front of the defender, followed by game play and bringing the ball through the court. The girls worked hard and were focussed in all their sessions.   

A quick change at the hotel and it was back down to the beach to enjoy the sunshine, play more games and practice for a talent show.

After dinner the girls and Mrs Gardner worked off some calories in a Zumba class, before heading off to bed to rest up for a tournament the following day.

We got the draw for the tournament and found out that our older team, (all U14 with two U13s Beth and Romilly) would be playing some U16 teams. But our girls rose to the challenge and showed resilience in bucket loads. No one would have known that they were much younger and, apart from one big loss, all the games were close.

Both teams won their first game, playing some great netball. Unfortunately, and not through want of trying, they were unable to win anymore of their group games, both finishing 4th in their pool.

They certainly did not give up and both won their play-off games to finish on a high. It was difficult to decide on Player of the Day for each team as they all did so well, but we decided that, for sheer work rate and commitment along with excellent play, Olivia Dyer and Hattie Marsh were our Players of the Day.

Back at the hotel a few girls went shopping while the rest set off to the beach for final talent show preparation and to enjoy the sun, sea and sand for the last time. After dinner we attended a presentation.

A number of players, from across the teams talking part, had been identified by the coaches over the previous three days and the awards were given with our very own Imogen Lamb receiving one. And, nominated by Mrs Gardner and Ms Nixson, the most improved players from Adcote were Maddie Rao and Jennifer Lo.

The final part of the tour was a talent show. Not knowing quite what to expect the girls had prepared a gymnastics meets hand clap/rhythm routine. Romilly and Olivia showcased their gymnastics skills while the rest of the girls acted as human percussionists.

There was a gasp from the whole audience as the two gymnasts performed the lift from ‘Dirty Dancing’ – but with Romilly supporting Olivia with just ONE hand (that is how you do it Patrick Swayze)! We were the only school to perform as one – and it was a great effort despite little time for preparation. Adcote has definitely Got Talent!

Before the flight home the girls were able to spend the best part of the following day enjoying the sunshine and ice creams by the hotel pool and souvenir shopping.

It was a fantastic trip and not just because the weather was so nice. We had so many compliments from hotel guests and coaches about the behaviour of our girls. Guests not only said how well behaved they were but commented on how well they all got on together.

Ms Nixson and Mrs Gardner would like to thank all the girls for making the trip so enjoyable and the parents for allowing the girls to go on the trip and dropping them off and picking them up at such anti-social times. Report by K Gardner