Wasps Netball will no longer be eligible to compete in the Netball Super League (NSL), the league and England Netball have confirmed.
By Amar Mehta
Last Updated: 10/11/22 7:34pm
Wasps Netball will no longer be eligible to compete in the Netball Super League next season.
The club’s holding company, Wasps Holdings Ltd, went into administration on October 17 and several parties have been in talks with administrators and England Netball to find a separate Netball-specific solution.
But the NSL and England Rugby have confirmed Wasps Netball will not compete in the Super League, which will now run as a 10-team competition from February.
England Netball’s chief executive, Fran Connolly, said it has been “a challenging time for all involved in Wasps Netball, particularly the staff and players”.
“Wasps Netball have delivered many successes during their time in the league. As two-time Champions with a loyal fan following, they have inspired and developed many players who will continue the Wasps legacy,” she said.
“Whilst we never gave up hope of finding a successful outcome, our hearts go out to everyone who is impacted by this sad news. I would like to express my gratitude and pay tribute to everyone involved for their patience, support and engagement throughout these last few weeks.
“Our focus now is to give clarity and certainty to players and staff who are impacted, and support them to return to courts, albeit different courts, as soon as possible.”
It has been confirmed that player pathway activity will be maintained through an England Rugby operated Central Player Pathway Programme and the NSL has allowed the reopening of the signing window, so Wasps players can sign as training partners for other clubs.
There had been hope that a buyer could be found for the entire sporting assets of Wasps Holdings, including netball, but no such buyer could be found, and the company ceased trading in October.
Interested parties have engaged with the administrators, FRP Advisory, and England Netball to secure a netball-specific solution but the NSL and England Rugby concluded that none of the proposals showed sufficient evidence that they could deliver the full requirements of an NSL franchise.
Wasps Netball joined the NSL in 2017 and won consecutive titles in 2017 and 2018, with the Coventry-based team attracting some of the league’s most high-profile players.
The 2023 NSL season is due to start on February 11.