Friday, 17 December 2010

Netball Around the World

Netball Singapore has this week announced Mission Foods as the title sponsor of the Mission Foods World Netball Championships (WNC) 2011, in an agreement worth S$450,000 (approx $343,000US). The deal was concluded in recognition of the growing strength of netball in the Asia Pacific region and the global reach o fthe Mission Foods World Netball Championships. It also builds on the company’s existing support for netball, following its three year agreement as naming sponsor for the ANZ Queensland Firebirds earlier this year.

The draw for the Mission Foods WNC 2011 was made this week, with reigning champions Australia drawn with Sri Lanka, Northern Ireland and Samoa in the opening rounds. Commonwealth champions New Zealand will meet Trinidad and Tobago, Fiji and Wales while world number three side England have been placed with Malawi, Barbados and Malaysia. The final group sees the 2007 bronze medallists Jamaica up against Singapore, South Africa and Botswana. At the end of the round robin stages, the top eight teams will compete in the Grand Final series, while the bottom eight sides will play off for positions 9-16.

Wales gave themselves the best possible festive gift with an impressive 53-30 win over Scotland in the final of the NTUC Fairprice Foundations Nations Cup final, after losing 41-48 to the same opponents in the round robin stages of the competition. This was the first appearance in the competition for Wales, who overturned the world rankings to beat Scotland, ranked one place above them. Tanzania defeated hosts Singapore 54-41 to take third place. The team is pictured with IFNA President Molly Rhone at the presentation of the trophy.

Netball New Zealand has made one change to its Commonwealth gold medal winning squad for the three match test series against England, to be played in January. Anna Thompson, who starred for New Zealand’s Fastnet Ferns in their win at the World Netball Series, replaces Temepara George, who is unavailable following recent minor ankle surgery. The full squad for the series is: Leana de Bruin, Katrina Grant, Joline Henry, Laura Langman, Liana Leota (nee Barrett-Chase), Grace Rasmussen, Anna Scarlett, Anna Thompson, Maria Tutaia, Irene van Dyk, Casey Williams (Capt), Daneka Wipiiti.

England’s selectors have added two new names – Rosie Allison and Lindsay Keable – to the country’s national squad for 2011. Both players have gained experience on overseas tours and as training partners for international test series but this is the first official selection for both. The full England squad for 2011 is: Rosie Allison, Karen Atkinson, Sara Bayman, Eboni Beckford-Chambers, Louisa Brownfield, Jade Clarke, Pamela Cookey, Sasha Corbin, Rachel Dunn, Stacey Francis, Tamsin Greenway, Serena Guthrie, Jo Harten, Naida Hutchinson, Lindsay Keable, Geva Mentor, Sonia Mkoloma.

Netball Barbados has launched its new website – which will be used to communicate information about the game at all levels across the island. Visit the site to find out more about netball in Barbados and to sign up for the regular newsletter.

Finally, back in England, Netball North West has teamed up with Cancer Research and Race for Life to raise money for the world’s leading charity dedicated to beating cancer. All netball leagues, clubs and schools in the North West are being asked to support Netball Pink week (24-30 January 2011) by donating £1 per person and wearing something pink when playing netball during the week. Good luck to all the participants.

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