NETBALL star Emma Latto has finally received her first Scotland U17 cap last weekend, at the Emirates Stadium in Glasgow.

The 15-year-old from Peebles was announced to the spectators as she took to the court as goal defence in the final quarter of Scotland’s match against Northern Ireland, which saw the home nation run out convincing winners at 58 goals to 28.

It was a long-awaited international appearance for the youngster who was entered into the Scotland trials last June by Peebles Netball coach, Linda Nicholson, having been talent-identified as having the potential to make her mark on the national scene.

Aged only 14 at the time, Emma’s experience had so far been confined to club and Border District squads.

But national selectors clearly agreed about her potential, and the former Beltane Queen started on her exciting but very tough year of training with the Scotland U17 squad.

Emma’s determination and dedication were tested repeatedly over the year with gruelling national training after school and at weekends in addition to her Peebles Netball and District training.

All was worthwhile, however, when she made the cut to the final 12 players to take to Netball Europe in Ireland in March.

But fate stepped in, and “Storm Emma” along freezing ice and snow, led to the event being cancelled.

Last weekend’s fixture at the Emirates, between Superleague teams Sirens and Manchester Thunder saved the day, with Netball Scotland organising a one-off international between their U17s and Northern Ireland for their young guns.

Emma’s international debut and cap were long-awaited but she has already been invited to the trials for next season’s Scotland U17s which will be held in June.

And she has a further two years of playing in the age-group.