Bethan shines for Wales
12:02pm Thursday 31st October 2013 in Sport
A PEMBROKESHIRE girl has helped Wales reach the final of the European Korfball held in the Netherlands.
The Welsh team turned in an impressive performance winning all their group matches to meet Turkey in the final.
Overcoming France and Romania, a very hard fought game against Ireland resulted in a draw at full time. Play then resumed on a sudden death basis with Wales scoring first and winning the match, an emotional result for the team
Bethan Phillips, of Llawhaden, played in her first international tournament and enjoyed the experience immensely playing in three games and selected to start the final against Turkey.
Korfball, a mixed team sport, has great similarities to the netball and basketball
Bethan is a former student of St Aidans, Wiston and Sir Thomas Picton Schools in Pembrokeshire. She studied at Birmingham University where she started playing the game and was selected to represent the University to play at league and national level.
Now living and working in Birmingham she plays for Birmingham City Korfball Club and was selected for the Welsh team following a trial in Cardiff earlier this year.
The Welsh team currently coached by Dutch professional Leon Simons is based in Cardiff who have their own Korfball League.
Indeed this year sees the start of Junior Korfball in Cardiff through the 5x60 Initiative and funding for schools. The game is also being heavily promoted in schools in the Midlands area. It is an ideal sport for schools with teams each comprising four boys and four girls competing against each other. It can be played indoors or outdoors with very little equipment required and is unique in that both sexes can play together and gaining respect for each others skills to the highest levels of the sport. There are leagues in over 50 counties world-wide and Chinese Taipei is currently world champions.
Wales lost a closely fought game against Turkey 7-4, but still qualified for the next European competition as runners-up to be held in Portugal next year.
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