Loughborough Lightning captain Nat Panagarry has been selected to represent England at the Netball World Cup. (Photo credit: Ben Lumley photography)

Loughborough Lightning captain selected for Red Roses World Cup squad

Loughborough Lightning captain Nat Panagarry has been selected to represent England at this summer’s Netball World Cup.

The mid-court player has enjoyed a fine season for Lightning, helping Sara Bayman’s side to a fourth-place finish in the Vitality Netball Super League. She will now join Tracey Neville’s 12-strong Red Roses squad for the tournament in Liverpool which runs 12-21 July.

“It’s absolutely amazing to be called up for the World Cup. I’m living a childhood dream of mine to be selected for a major tournament and I still can’t believe it,” Nat said.

“Since the Commonwealth Games, we’ve seen an incredible amount of interest in the sport and an increase in the number of people now playing netball. We’ve got our home fans cheering us on in Liverpool, so I can’t wait to step out, see everyone’s faces, and hopefully live up to expectations and get that gold.”

Panagarry’s call up caps an excellent year in which she was awarded both Loughborough Lightning’s ‘Coaches Player of the Year’ and ‘Fans’ Player of the Year’ for her efforts during the 2019 campaign. Nat was also named in the Vitality Netball Super League All-Star VII, voted for by all teams within the league.

Nat explained the role Loughborough University played in her selection:

“At Loughborough the facilities and structure we have are phenomenal, and I don’t think any other franchise comes close. The amount we can access as players - both on the court and off the court - is amazing and I couldn’t be more thankful to Loughborough, and of course Lightning, for making me the player I feel like I am today.”

Olivia Murphy, Loughborough Lightning Franchise Director, added:

“We, at Loughborough Lightning, are so proud of Nat. This is a product of all her hard work, commitment and drive to be better. She is thoroughly deserving of the place in the squad and we know she will be a great asset to the team. We wish Nat and the team all the very best in their quest to win the World Cup.”

The England squad also features Loughborough University alumnae Jo Harten and Jade Clarke. Former Lightning player Layla Guscoth also made the cut.

The Red Roses go into the tournament as second favourites and have been drawn in Group D alongside Uganda, Scotland, and Samoa.

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 19/64

Loughborough University is equipped with a live in-house broadcast unit via the Globelynx network. To arrange an interview with one of our experts please contact the press office on 01509 223491. Bookings can be made online via www.globelynx.com

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, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2019 QS World University Rankings, University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2019 and top in the country for its student experience in the 2018 THE Student Experience Survey.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2019, 5th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019 and 8th in The UK Complete University Guide 2020.

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.

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.