On a sunny Wednesday morning in October, the Mintridge team had the pleasure of attending Benenden School for a jam-packed Bronze netball programme with Eboni Beckford-Chambers.
With a full netball programme to get through, our morning began with a coaching session led by Eboni, focusing on ball skills and movement on court with the new netballers who had started in September. Eboni was impressed by the girl’s enthusiasm and application to the practices. It was certainly an approach that the teams throughout the day went on to replicate.
With a range of teams and age groups to meet throughout the day, Eboni delivered a wide variety of practices, including how to create an interception, marking the player, hunting the ball, and how to get free and into space from a centre. The day was a fantastic opportunity for the students and staff to learn some top tips from our Team Bath and England Roses defender.
The girls in each session worked hard to show off their skills to Eboni and take away a new concept from each of the sessions she delivered throughout the day. After a morning of coaching Benenden School’s GCSE students gained an insight into the life of one of the world’s best netball defenders. The girls were inspired by Eboni’s determination and how well she has done in elite sport and her academic studies. The presentation was the perfect opportunity for the students to ask questions to Eboni about her life and work. Some of the best questions included:
Do you ever think, is this all worth it?
Do you train every day?
If you had to choose, which would you choose, netball or law?
How long were you out of netball with your knee injury?
Do you like experimenting with food and nutrition?
At the end of the presentation the ladies all had the chance to write down their aspirations and post them in our golden post-box. It was so great to be in the presence of so many aspirational young women, who we hope have been inspired by Eboni’s story and her journey.
Our day of netball wasn’t over yet. The evening sessions began with the senior age groups who worked hard on defensive positioning and preventing the attackers running into space. Like all the sessions before, the girls had their photos taken with Eboni and received signed autograph cards to takeaway.
As the day drew to a close, Benenden School invited Eboni and the Mintridge team to their Sports Scholars’ supper. The ladies all came together to celebrate their sporting achievements and to receive their sports colours from Eboni. As we shared dinner together the ladies had the chance to chat with Eboni and ask any last-minute questions before the evening would end.
The Mintridge Foundation are so grateful for the incredible welcome we received from the staff and students at Benenden School. Eboni had a fantastic day meeting all the talented netballers and scholars throughout the day. We wish you every success in the up and coming netball season.
The school have all the photos and videos from the day if you would like to see them.
Thank you again Benenden School, you were fantastic, and we hope to work with you again soon!