Vitality Netball Superleague: Kathryn Ratnapala focused on marginal gains at Saracens Mavericks
Saracens Mavericks are energised and ready to measure in order to break through the glass ceiling at the Vitality Netball Superleague.
A buzz was across the University of Hertfordshire venue last Wednesday as her participants along with head coach Kathryn Ratnapala.
For the Mavericks, this mid-week period court follows a weights session and provides them a chance to focus on team and individual specifics.
Like all Superleague teams, they are eager to get to Birmingham for the Season Opener and are keen to make certain that this season does not adhere to the pattern of the prior two.
“This pre-season we have tried out various methods of approaching the season ahead and we’ve done some things,” head coach Ratnapala informs Sky Sports.
“We now had a debrief on this past year and we have been really honest with ourselves and each other about what we want from the new season.
“We’ve got a wonderful group of athletes and it’s been a very enjoyable but hard-working so I am really eager to have onto court together with the squad.”
Ratnapala along with her players’ debrief will not happen to be a simple one since the franchise had missing out on their target of the play-offs – .
Despite having had a storming start to the 2019 year and looking like favourites for a end, three losses destabilised them.
They had much to do in their season’s denouement about missing out, and the head trainer reflects.
“The last couple of years are such a disappointment. For us to finish fifth couple of decades in a row, we know we’re much better than that,” Ratnapala says.
“For the players to want to stay this year, since they think that we are far much better than our past effects, means that a lot.
“We are excited, we’ve got a new fresh atmosphere about the group and also our workings with Saracens have given us a lot of fresh ideas and approaches this season.
“I’m just excited about getting through a season with the group really stepping up, delivering court and staying as a collective unit”
This time, when it comes the Superleague season and their target, the Mavericks’ goal posts have changed. As Ratnapala explains, they have shifted for a reason.
“We’re setting ourselves a goal of three this year,” she says.
“Formerly, it has ever been top four, but we’ve missed out. The main reason is that the margins between the groups and the level of rivalry better and getting better.
“That is really fascinating, and it makes for excellent viewing but from our side, it usually means that we need to keep on pushing and stepping up to every game.”
It recognized that doing the same thing again and expecting different results is not wholly sensible.
There’s simply no possibility of Ratnapala along with the Mavericks falling into that snare.
Rather, they have introduced new approaches into coaching and have looked in the ways they assess themselves.
“We have individual targets. We’ve got human targets for each game which we’re working towards to maintain the momentum,” Ratnapala states.
“We’re going to be even more truthful with ourselves and each other and we’ve got the squad to do that this year. We had a little fun with it and it has been a positive tool.
“It is about making sure that we’re accountable for each minute that we’re on court. It is likely to be about margins it is actually.
“It’s the one percent gains that will make the difference, from the different types of sessions which we’re doing to making sure we’ve obtained the honesty around the room.
“These things may sound small but really they are enormous.”
The Season Opener at Arena Birmingham will be the first chance for the Mavericks to observe this procedure in league action. Severn Stars will be their rivals, which in itself adds a dynamic that is different.
“They’ve got a completely new-look squad this season so it’ll be an interesting one,” the head coach says.
“We’re looking at these and they are an unknown group with brand new signings this year. Therefore, we’re just focusing on ourselves and this isn’t a bad spot to be.”
When the newest Vitality Superleague year gets underway with all 10 teams in activity in the Season Opener from Arena Birmingham on Saturday, February 41, sky Sports can be back to the screens this month and is your house of netball.