Jade Clarke and Geva Mentor were on Tuesday named in the England squad of 12 for the Vitality Netball World Cup 2023, to be held in Cape Town from 28 July to 6 August.
England Netball named a squad of 12, plus three non-travelling reserves for the tournament, where they will be one of the favourites from their current world ranking of No3. They finished third in their home tournament in Liverpool four years ago.
Clark (pictured) and Mentor will be appearing in their sixth World Cup, which matches the international record of Rhonda John-Davis of Trinidad & Tobago.
The England World Cup squad is a healthy blend of youth and experience, with a total of 810 caps spread through the group. Funmi Fadoju and Olivia Tchine will be making their major international tournament debuts.
Head coach Jess Thirlby is confident that England are “more than capable” of succeeding in Cape Town. “My whole purpose when I wake up in the morning is this drive and authentic belief in the ability that this team have to compete on a world stage and I won’t ever shy away from that,” she said on Tuesday.
“Of course I’m really excited but, most importantly, confident, with an ambition and a belief that this 12 and those three reserves are more than capable at their best to beat the best. We have great ambition in the team but I have a huge amount of belief in what we’re capable of doing and so do they so I’m looking forward to the next few months in harnessing that.
“I think the point of difference for me is in the balance of the group now. We’ve got three potential specialists and all others are offering us two or more positions. We speak about our Roses way being about high energy, tactical clarity and diversity. The key to success for me is getting our players to unlock what I know they can do, which we’ve seen on a number of occasions, doing it collectively and playing with real high energy, confidence and belief,” Thirlby added.
Imogen Alison, Eleanor Cardwell, Jade Clarke, Funmi Fadoju, Layla Guscoth, Helen Housby, Laura Malcolm, Geva Mentor, Natalie Metcalf, Chelsea Pitman, Olivia Tchine, Fran Williams. Reserves: Halimat Adio, Amy Carter, Sophie Drakeford-Lewis
ENGLAND’S WORLD CUP RECORD
Best finish: Finalists (1975)
3rd place: Six times
4th place: Eight times
1963: Hosts England finished 3rd, with Australia champions
1967: England finished 4th in Perth, with New Zealand winning
1971: England placed 3rd in Kingston, with Australia winning
1975: England were beaten in the final in Auckland by Australia
1979: England finished 4th in Port Of Spain, with NZ, Australia and Trinidad & Tobago sharing the title
1983: England finished 4th in Singapore, with Australia winning
1987: England finished 4th in Glasgow, with NZ winning
1991: England finished 4th in Sydney, with Australia winning
1995: Hosts England finished 4th, with Australia winning
1999: England finished 3rd in Christchurch, with Australia winning
2003: England finished 4th in Kingston, with NZ winning
2007: England finished 4th in Auckland, with Australia winning
2011: England finished 3rd in Singapore, with Australia winning
2015: England finished 3rd in Sydney, with Australia winning
2019: Hosts England finished 3rd, with NZ winning
Watch highlights of England in their 2019 bronze medal match with South Africa