Best netball nations converge on Johannesburg
THE aristocrats of world netball precipitate on the serene South African scenes next week, sending the game’s legion of devotees into unconfined delirium.
Of course, there is valid reason for netball’s fanatical fans to celebrate when four of the best teams in the world converge in Johannesburg for the next stage of the SPAR Quad Series.
The matches, involving world champions Australia, New Zealand, England and South Africa, will be played at the Ellis Park Arena, which has the capacity to accommodate 5000 spectators from January 25 to 28.
The Quad Series has become an exhilarating fixture programme on the international netball calendar of events, bringing together the world’s top three teams and South Africa, who are ranked fifth in the world.
The Proteas’ participation in the flagship tourney is aimed at improving its ranking by competing against the best in the world.
During the Australian leg of the series earlier last year, the SPAR Proteas proved that they were not just making up the numbers with a thrilling 54-51 victory over the England Roses in Invercargill in New Zealand.
They also reduced the goal difference in their matches against powerhouses, Australia and
New Zealand, showing that the experience they gained by playing against the best is now bearing fruits.
The South African leg of the Quad Series is preceded by the tour of England which gets underway this weekend from Friday until Monday, in which matches will be played in London’s Copper Box Arena.
South Africa will raise the curtain tomorrow when they lock horns with the mighty Australia while the hosts, England cross path with New Zealand in the second match later in the afternoon.
It will go down to the wire on Monday when England take on Australia in a match that will definitely ignite fireworks amid scenes of unlimited frenzy.
The four teams then move to South Africa for the final leg of the 2017/18 series.
South Africa will play the New Zealand Silver Ferns at 19:00 on Thursday (January 25).
The other matches will be played on Sunday (January 28).
The Australian Diamonds will play the Silver Ferns in a midday fixture, and the Proteas will finish the series off with the Battle of the Flowers when they take on the Roses at 14:30.
The SPAR Protea’s newly appointed coach Dr. Elsje Jordaan has made it clear that: “The only way South Africa can improve is by playing the best teams in the world and this Quad Series will allow our team to compete against the world’s best in front of their home fans.”
SPAR Group Marketing Executive Mike Prentice said the company was very proud of their involvement in the series.
He said, “As SPAR, we are proud to be presenting the SPAR Quad Series and enabling Netball South Africa to bring the world’s best netball teams to the country. SPAR are committed to supporting the plan set up by consultant coach, Norma Plummer and coach Elsje Jordaan to lay a solid foundation ahead of the next World Cup in Liverpool next year.”
The SPAR Proteas are scheduled to lock horns with the best netball nations in the Quad Series to be staged in London and Johannesburg.