Confident SA netball team prepares for Ireland clash

2012-07-04 16:19

Bolstered by a recent win against Jamaica, the South African netball team is cautiously optimistic about their chances against their counterparts from Northern Ireland.

Netball South Africa (NSA) has named a 14-member squad that will take on Northern Ireland in a three-Test series in Cape Town next week.
South Africa will host the Irish team at the Good Hope Centre from Monday to Wednesday.

Northern Ireland are ranked 12th in the world – well below South Africa’s fifth-place rankings.

Two weeks ago, South Africa pulled off an upset to beat Jamaica’s senior netball team 56-49 in the third and final game of the Test Series in Jamaica.

Team captain Amanda Mynhardt said the Jamaica win was a big confidence boost. “We’re not saying we’re the best or anything, but we do believe we can build on that victory. We certainly won’t be taking Northern Ireland lightly.

“They gave us quite a fright in Singapore. They are ranked below us and we should have beaten them easily, but they fought like tigers, and put us under a lot of pressure.”

Coach Elize Kotze said: “The more international experience we can get the better. We have the Commonwealth Games coming up in 2014 and the next World Championships in 2015, and we have to keep testing ourselves as we prepare for these major events.”

Meanwhile, the South African Under-21 side will also be playing a three-match series against their Great Britain counterparts, immediately before the main matches.

Tickets cost R25 for adults and R15 for scholars, and will be available at the door.

The team:

Amanda Mynhardt (captain); Zanele Mdodana (vice-captain); Erin Burger, Nokuthula Qegu; Chrisna Botha, Bongiwe Msomi; Precious Mthembu; Maryka Hotlzhausen; Aneret Viljoen; Vanes-Mari du Toit; Adele Niemand; Nosiphiwo Goda; Claudia Basson; Karla Mostert.

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