Over the summer, Oundle School netballer, Sienna Rushton (15) toured New Zealand with the U19 England Netball Squad.
The team took on Beko League giving many of them their first taste of the New Zealand style of play. The highlight of the tour saw the team compete in the 2017 Netball NZ U19 Championships at the ASB Sports Centre, Wellington. During the competition, the team won all of their matches, playing teams from Auckland, Christchurch and Hamilton. They even beat Wellington, the reigning champions from the previous year.
Sienna commented, “New Zealand was a great opportunity and learning experience for me, not only to learn about the New Zealand style of play but to improve on all my skills and channels of play. It was incredible to travel all the way to NZ and I loved the whole experience, from the stunning scenery to the hard-fought matches. All of the girls played so well and I can’t wait to use what I learnt at the start of this new season.”
Back in March, Sienna was capped three times as a member of the U17 England National Squad at the Netball Europe Championships, held in Belfast. Considerable victories against Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland saw the England team triumph as European champions.
Sienna‘s netball career outside of School is with her local club Turnford Netball Club. She has represented them at U12, U14 and U16 Regional and National Club level and is currently playing for their Senior Squad in the England Netball Premier League Division 1. Since joining Oundle in September 2015 as a Sports Scholar, Sienna has also been selected to represent the Netball Super League team Wasps at U21 level.
Sienna has had to work extremely hard both with coaches and on her own and is supported by Oundle’s Head of Netball, Bev Burnham with every aspect of her netball training. ‘Technical and Tactical’ netball skills are undertaken with School coaches and a full ‘Strength and Conditioning’ programme is also provided. Sienna has to manage her time with precision to enable her to study as well as train.
Sienna’s journey has not been an easy one as earlier in the year she sustained an ankle injury which has been monitored and nurtured by medical staff both internally and externally. She has to travel to Loughborough University for Regional training, Coventry for Wasps, Sheffield, Bath and many other places for England, and all over the country for her club team matches. This, alongside her study, makes her life at Oundle a very busy one.
Head of Netball, Bev Burnham commented, “Sienna is a fantastic role model to young netball players both in and out of School. She has a positive work ethic which she should be proud of. To have her here at Oundle boosts both the Netball club and the Sports Scholarship programme and we all wish her well.”
Background Information on Oundle School
Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.
The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2016, the School completed its ambitious SciTec project, uniting Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. The development includes the ground-breaking Patrick Engineering Centre, a new Mathematics department and an extension to its sixteen state-of-the-art Science laboratories. Oundle has now embarked on a detailed Sports MasterPlan which will significantly upgrade sporting facilities across the School by 2020, incorporating the building of a new Sports Centre housing a fifty metre swimming pool and an eight court sports hall.
There are currently 1110 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 860 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day school for children aged 4 to 11.