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Lightning bolster Netball Superleague squad by signing Clark and Mason

Loughborough Lightning Netball is delighted to announce that Ella Clark and Olivia Mason will round out its 12 player squad for the forthcoming Vitality Netball Superleague season, which kicks off at home to Manchester Thunder on Saturday 18th February.

Clark is professional basketball player for PF Umbertide in Italy, having previously played in Spain and America, where she studied for four years. She is no stranger to netball however, having previously played in the Superleague for Hertfordshire Mavericks.

Based in Loughborough last summer as part of the England Netball full-time programme before heading out to Italy, Clark is both a Basketball and Netball international. She will link up with the squad as soon as her basketball duties are finished in April.

Olivia Mason is already a training partner of the Lightning squad, so makes a seamless transition into the final 12. A former England junior international, Mason can play both mid court and in the shooting circle, so provides lots of versatility.

Both girls join the Lightning squad at this late stage after Lauren Nicholls’ and Brittany Coleman’s season ending injuries.

Of her two signings Lightning Head Coach Karen Atkinson said:

“Although under difficult circumstances, we are pleased to have both Ella and Liv as part of our squad for the 2017 season.  Liv has been working extremely hard during the pre-season phase.  She has embraced the opportunity to be a training partner and the fact that she can play across both the shooting circle and mid-court will be of real benefit to us this season.  She thoroughly deserves this opportunity to step up into the squad of 12.

“I have fond memories of playing with Ella for Mavericks back in 2010 when she was a talented youngster.  She is a professional athlete and a high calibre person with the experience needed to play at this level.  Although she will miss the first few matches of the season, we feel she will add impact to our squad both on and off the court.  I know that she will fit in seamlessly when she relocates to Loughborough at the end of her basketball season and I am looking forward to working with her again.”

Clark added:

"I'm really looking forward to joining Lightning and working with Karen again. It’s a great opportunity for me, and I’m excited to be part of this talented team."

Of her addition to the Superleague side Mason commented:

"I am hugely excited and grateful for the opportunity to play for Loughborough Lightning in what is anticipated to be a highly competitive Superleague season. With new franchises and lots of player movement it really is going to be exciting seeing all the teams in action. I have thoroughly enjoyed the preseason training so far and I’m really looking forward to being back in a purple dress!"

Tickets to see Loughborough Lightning in action at Loughborough University are still on sale here: http://loughboroughsport.com/loughborough-lightning/fixturesandresults/

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: PR 17/21

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Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, putting it among the best universities in the world, and was named the best in the country for its student experience in the 2016 THE Student Experience Survey. Loughborough was ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2017 and 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2017 and was also named Sports University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

In September 2015 the University opened an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.

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