With 238 days left to go before South Africa host the 2023 Netball World Cup in Cape Town, a draw confirming the 16 participating teams was held in East London on Wednesday night.
The East London ICC was a hive of activities as the world of netball gathered for the team draw. South Africa together with Australia, England, Jamaica, New Zealand, and Uganda got automatic qualification to the World Cup due to their world ranking.
During the months of July and August of this year, it was left to the regional qualifiers to determine the remaining teams to participate at next year’s global showpiece.
The four countries carrying hopes of Africa are South Africa, Malawi Uganda, and Zimbabwe. Hosts South Africa find themselves in Pool C paired alongside Jamaica, Wales, and Sri Lanka. The SPAR Proteas have faced these teams at a world Cup before.
The SPAR Proteas have been drawn with Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls in a group at a World Cup on three previous occasions, in 2003, 2011 and most recently 2019. South Africa last shared a group with Wales in 1999 and Sri Lanka in 2015. South Africa is ranked 5th in the world, Jamaica 4th, Wales 9th and Sri Lanka 16th (World rankings based on matches up to 3 November 2022).
“We are happy with the draw because we believe that it turned out the way it was supposed to. We would like to wish all the teams well and everything of the best as they continue to prepare for this world cup. Our players are hard at training already as they prepare themselves for a podium finish,” said Cecilia Molokwane, Netball South Africa President.
Eleven-time world champs Australia are in Pool A with Tonga, Zimbabwe, and Fiji while Pool B is made up by England, Malawi, Scotland and Barbados and the last group will see New Zealand face off against Uganda, Singapore, and Trinidad & Tobago.
The 2023 Netball World Cup will take place in Cape Town from the 28th of July – 06th of August 2023, all the 60 matches will be broadcast by both pay channel SuperSport and free to air SABC.
First round of tickets for the 2023 Netball World Cup will go on sale as of the 5th of December 2022 as confirmed by Tournament Director Priscilla Masisi.