Credit: London Pulse.

Pulse goaler Kira Rothwell is gearing up for 'a big year ahead' with a newfound confidence that she credits to a 'competitive culture'.

London Pulse goaler Kira Rothwell is gearing up for ‘a big year ahead’ with a newfound confidence that she credits to coach Sam Bird and South African goaler Lefebre Rademan.

At just 20-years-old, Rothwell is likely to get minutes on court in both wing attack and goal attack in a Pulse side that many people are tipping to be a dark horse to the 2021 Superleague title.

Rothwell – who is also part of the England Futures programme – said when the 2020 competition closed just two matches into round 4 due to COVID-19, she was given a unique chance to reinvigorate her netball.

“I have been very lucky to have the support I have had at London Pulse. As soon as lockdown came, we got on zoom with the whole squad and trained every day – we were probably seeing each other more,” she told The Inner Sanctum.

“The lockdown actually came at a good time for me personally. It gave me a chance to focus on basic things I wasn’t happy with or had lost confidence in. I could go practice my passing, spend hours shooting in the garden – I am seeing the positives in it.

“I am always trying to improve. I am trying to cement a good spot on the team. This year I have more confidence, our team like a family and it’ll only be a big season for me if it is for the team, too.”

The Pulse’s squad is made up of players from all around the world including England, South Africa, Jamaica and Northern Ireland, and carries a mix of experience and youth.

That’s where South African international and goaler Lefebre Rademan comes in.

Rothwell said the duo have taught each other about new ways to play the game – despite appearing as similar players in style.

“Although Lefebre plays the same position as me, we actually play very different,” she said. “We have both learned so much from each other. It has made me so much better as a player.

“I am grateful to Sam [Bird] for creating that kind of competitive culture that we’re all going to thrive in.

“We’re lucky to have the depth we have. We could put out two starting sevens and both would be competitive.”

Rothwell also said ‘there is going to be two different versions of Kira’ – a dynamic wing attack, and a baseline running-long bomb shooting goal attack to support her shooters – like South Africa’s Sigi Burger or England Futures’ Olivia Tchine.

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