Two London sisters plan to celebrate in style if they scoop a Commonwealth Games medal – by performing their “banned” victory backflips.
Netball players Sasha and Kadeen Corbin have made the acrobatic stunts their trademark but have been ordered not to attempt them to avoid injury in the run-up to the Games.
Last year they backflipped their way down the court at Wembley Arena after victory against Australia. “We were very excited at the time we did our backflips,” said Sasha. “That was obviously a pinnacle moment for everyone in the England team.
“We are not allowed to do them just now. We don’t want to get injured. But if something truly amazing happens in the Commonwealth Games, we might need to bust out some more.”
The sisters are part of a north London sporting dynasty – their cousin is the sprinter Asha Philip, while their mum Violet continues to run Troy netball club in Tottenham.
They credit her for encouraging their love of sport as teenagers.
Kadeen, 22, said: “From a young age we have always been into sport. We used to be gymnasts and then did athletics.”
Sasha, 26, said: “It was netball that I decided I wanted to take up, and she supported that. When we had to travel all around the country, she was the person who would take us there.”
Sasha said competing at the Commonwealth Games it had been the culmination of years of hard work and determination to overcome injuries. “I have had heartbreak,” she said.
“To be able to represent England at the biggest stage for us is just a dream come true.”
Kadeen is a netball coach at Barking Abbey school, a specialist sports college in Barking. She recently moved back home after completing a degree at Bath university.
Sasha, who lives in Enfield, is a Team England netball ambassador, and works with the commercial marketing team to drive interest in the sport. She runs Back 2 Netball courses in Tottenham to encourage women who played netball at school to return to the sport.
Both sisters visit Troy as often as possible and work to boost involvement in sport in their own community. “I want to give back to where I came from,” said Kadeen.
Sasha said: “I’m so honoured and privileged to have been given a job and do such an important role to promote netball as much as possible.”
They are due on court on Friday morning [July 25] for England’s opening fixture against Wales. Netball is not an Olympic sport – meaning the Commonwealth Games are the pinnacle of their sport.
“At the moment, we are just trying to look for better performances every day,” said Kadeen. “We want to get to the final, where we have never been before.”