Zaneta, a keen and competitive Rounders player, attended the England Squad Trials for the first time last year and was successful. We caught up with her in 2018 to find out her motivation to play Rounders, her experience with the trials, and her thoughts on the upcoming season.
How long have you been involved with Rounders?
I started playing Rounders at school and when I left, I joined a team in the Luctonians League with my friend and have been playing regularly ever since. I have played with the team Touch and Go for 4 years now, but I played for a different team before this. I enjoy Rounders because it can be anything you want it to be – if you feel competitive, you can really go for it, challenge yourself, and your team, to do their absolute best. It’s such a great social sport and even if you’re having a bad day or you’re not as confident with your skills, you can still have the best time playing with people you know or don’t know yet! There’s always so much fun and support during games and practices.
What is your motivation for playing?
I always aim to push myself at all times and keep fit. Seeing whether my batting stats have improved at the end of the season is always really exciting! It’s also nice to keep in contact with people that I wouldn’t normally see on a regular basis.
Why did you decide to attend the trials?
I decided to attend the trials because this summer especially, I’ve noticed how much I’ve improved my game and Rounders skills. I gained a lot more confidence because of this and got even more competitive during our league games. I received a lot of compliments when playing against the England Squad during a festival in the summer. All of these factors, plus being recognised as the player of the tournament for the team I was playing for, motivated me to trial. One of my friends was the U21 captain last season and she encouraged me to try out too.
I attended the trials with my partner for the much needed support. When I found out I’d been selected, my team Touch and Go were all so excited for me and super proud to have an England player in their team!
Michelle Golland, Rounders England Head Coach, commented on Zaneta’s performance at the trials:
“Zaneta is a strong runner and her batting was very good. She was an above average fielder and also performed great in the skills segment. Her overall score on the day was an impressive 56 out of a possible 70.”
How do you feel about the upcoming season?
I am so proud to be part of the squad – I never thought I’d ever achieve anything at such a high level! I’m really looking forward to the challenges and experiences that playing for England will bring and look forward to meeting new people. I’m a secondary school PE teacher and hope to use the knowledge and experiences that I gain to inspire and motivate my students.
My partner will definitely come to as many events as possible. One of the fixtures is in my home town, Hereford, so I’m hoping to get as many of my friends and family as possible to attend. I’m also hoping to organise a school trip for some of my students to come and support us.
I’m not nervous just yet… just excited and eager to get started!
Do you have what it takes to play for England? Entry to the 2020 season trials is open. Click here for more details.