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Fun-loving Ravens side revel in title win

Joanne Bielby has reflected on Ravens' ‘fun-packed' season which saw them lift the Women's ‘A' Division title with a game to spare.

Ravens reeled off two wins over defending champions Canaries and Budgies to claim top spot in the league table last weekend.

Bielby said Ravens' title triumph was the culmination of a total team effort and that their priority for the campaign had been simply to have fun.

“We are thrilled to win the ‘A' league title this year,” said Bielby, a Bermuda national team player. “It was a tough season and a very tight one for much of the season between four clubs.

“The Budgies, although not close in the title race, certainly gave all the teams a run for their money and managed to draw many of their games.

“Ravens didn't know what to expect this season and really just took each game as it came.

“We have a fantastic team of players who really worked hard together and made sure to have fun.”

Bielby said Ravens' accomplishment was all the more impressive considering the team did not have a permanent coach throughout the season.

“We started out the season without a coach which can make things difficult,” she said. “Val Young who coaches the ‘B' team who stepped in to help and then in the last two months Donnie Simmons showed an interest and we've been coached by him which has really helped.

“The main thing we concentrated on this year was to just have fun and have used many of our junior players to give them the experience.”

Ravens will now play their final game this weekend against Budgies and can add to their five point gap with a win to reaffirm their superiority.

Swallows and Canaries are level on 35 points.

For a club that has landed a batch of trophies in the past five seasons, including the Women's ‘B' title last season, the bar has been raised to dizzying heights.

But they won't rest on their laurels, said Bielby, with the team setting their sights on lifting the upcoming Knockout Cup.

“Ravens ‘B' won the league last year but the ‘A' side missed out to Canaries so beating them to win the league does feel great,” Bielby said.

“We still have the Knockout Cup to look forward to but we expect this to be just as close as the league has been and any number of teams could win it.

“There were definitely nerves this past weekend but I don't think it's any different than any other game except there was more riding on it.

“Putting too much pressure on yourself can sometimes have a negative effect so we really just went in to play our game and have faith in our ability as a team.

“We have one game left to play but are clear of the team in second place by five points.”

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Published March 31, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated March 31, 2011 at 9:24 am)

Fun-loving Ravens side revel in title win

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