2024 Netball Super League Preview – Cardiff Dragons

THE 2024 Netball Super League season is almost upon us, and to celebrate the build up to the season we here at Rookie Me Central will be previewing each of the 10 competing and seeing how 2024 might unfold for them.

First cab off the ranks is the 2023 wooden spooners the Cardiff Dragons.

2023 did not exactly go to plan for the Dragons, with only two wins on the board seeing them finish dead last on the ladder.

But with plenty of new faces and plenty of added experience injected into the line up, will things turn around for the Welsh side in 2024?

This offseason saw plenty of change for the Dragons, both on court and off it.

Firstly, they have a new name this year, changing from the Celtic Dragons to the more geo-specific Cardiff Dragons.

On court, there has been plenty of changes, with only three members of the 2023 squad returning this season, and those three returning players are all shooters.

Phillipa Yarranton, Laura Rudland and Georgia Rowe will be joined this season by Hannah Passmore, who certainly brings in plenty of height to the shooting department at the Dragons.

Even though the most stability in terms of list turnover is in the shooting department, that still does not mean it is clear who will be the starting shooters week in week out.

Rudland got plenty of time out at goal attack last year and may continue to do so this season especially with no Gabby Sinclair around anymore to fight for game time.

But who will take the shooter bib? Will it be Rowe who is coming off a decent international series, or new girl Passmore? And where does Yarranton fit into all of this?

Moving up into the midcourt, and there are new faces as far as the eyes can see.

However, one is a returning face as Welsh captain Nia Jones is back in green after a year away at the Leeds Rhinos.

She has brought another experienced faced with her back from the Rhinos in Elle McDonald, and together the pair are sure to form the backbone of the midcourt and drive into attack for those in green this season.

The question will be, who will fill that third midcourter roll. Khanyisa Chawane is new to the league but has international experience, while Beth Ecuyer-Dale is coming off a season where she averaged almost 20 feeds a game.

Moving into the defensive quartet, and this group has a mixture of origin stories before joining the team this season but will all be keen to nab and keep a starting spot in the Dragons’ line up this season.

One face that many Dragons fans will be happy to see back is Lucy Howells, who after a few years away from the league is back in green in 2024.

One new face that has swapped clubs ahead of 2024 is Leah Middleton, who comes to the Dragons after a big year already, making her international debut for Wales last month.

Then there is Nansi Kuti and Jacqui Newton, two young stars getting their inaugural chance in the Super League and although may not get their chance straight away, will be pushing hard to make sure it comes sooner rather than later.

With all these new faces comes some big name departures, and the question will be can the Dragons counter the effects that the experience of Clare Jones, Ella Powell-Davies and Shaquanda Greene-Noel no longer being around will have on the team?

Cardiff Dragons 2024 Squad

Nansi Kuti, Lucy Howells, Jacqui Newton, Leah Middleton, Khanyisa ‘KC’ Chawane, Beth Ecuyer-Dale, Elle McDonald, Nia Jones, Phillipa Yarranton, Laura Rudland, Georgia Rowe, Hannah Passmore

Training Partners – Zoe Matthewman, Shona O’Dwyer and Millie Carter

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