Lead by Head Coach Novlette Balela, a strong core of ladies were low in numbers but large in motivation as the team was formed and the foundation set for the 2019-2020 season.
Confidence was boosted with the winning of the 2019 Summer League and the West Midlands Premier League season promised to be an exciting challenge for the team.
With more depth in the squad required, COB Junior girls were invited to join the group to enhance their progression bringing energy and great enthusiasm to the senior women’s squad.
The lack of women’s teams in the region has been a source of frustration over the past few seasons and with late withdrawals there were again fewer fixtures than the players, coaches or club would have liked.
The small league amount of fixtures in the league meant that quality practice time was even more important than usual- the club provided increased opportunity to practice with Coach Ricardo D’Alva delivering skill based sessions prior to team practice.
On court the lack of consistent fixtures meant gaining any momentum was challenging for the team. There were still some excellent performances during the season with the highlight a 52-45 win over Redditch Regals in February.
With several tight games there were plenty of positives whilst the balance of youth and experience made the team unique.
Team Manager Mary Ponjee said, “There were many compliments given to Rockets by our opponents for the development of girls and womens basketball which we are all proud of.
Playing in senior competition has enabled our Rockets younger girls to learn how to compete against physically stronger players. The more experienced women in the group were happy to share their knowledge and raised their levels of play to become good role models for our talented youngsters.
Thank you to Coach Balela for her commitment and leadership and to Coach Elfrey who came in to support with Coach Zaina Mistry. We also really enjoyed the skill development sessions delivered by Coach D’Alva – the variety of support from all of the coaches helped us during the season.”
This was a transitional season for the womens team as the juniors and seniors blended together – the club look forward with great optimism to build on these foundations set across the girls and women’s programme in 2020/21.