Netball activities in SA given green light to resume

Netball South Africa president Cecilia Molokwane has said the safety of the players and staff will not be compromised.
Netball South Africa president Cecilia Molokwane has said the safety of the players and staff will not be compromised.
Image: Reg Caldecott/Gallo Images

Netball South Africa (NSA) has announced that their activities will resume with immediate effect.

Activities were suspended last month after a spike in Covid-19 cases which led to President Cyril Ramaphosa introducing level three restrictions which were recently reviewed and relaxed.

“The decision to resume netball activities was not an easy one because we are still amid a pandemic and we needed to be very careful on how we will do things going forward‚” said NSA president Cecilia Molokwane.

“This was a balancing act because key to our list of priorities is ensuring that we preserve the lives of all our stakeholders whilst we play the sport we love.

"As the executive together with our events and compliance teams‚ we have put measures in place that will enable us to make sure that we protect the lives of everyone.”

NSA said the first event to take place will be the Spar Challenge in Cape Town from the 24th to the 31st of March after it was postponed last month due to level three restrictions.

Participating teams will be the Netball Proteas‚ the SA President’s XII‚ the Baby Proteas (SA U21)‚ Uganda while Namibia are yet to confirm their participation in the series.

NSA reiterated that the series will take place in a biologically safe environment and teams will meet for a pre-training camp between the 19th and 23rd of March 2021.

The Netball Proteas team and SA President’s XII team were announced in December 2020 and head coach of the Baby Proteas (U21) Dr Elsje Jordaan will announce her final team before the series.

The Baby Proteas will use the series to get some game time and work on combinations ahead of the U21 Netball World Youth Cup in Fiji at the end of the year.

“In such challenging times‚ we are blessed to be able to play competitive netball and our appreciation goes to the Department of Sports‚ Art and Culture‚ Netball South Africa and the City of Cape Town for partnering together to make sure that the 2021 Spar Challenge takes place in a safe environment‚” said Spar Group Marketing Executive Mike Prentice.

“The City of Cape Town is proud to partner with Netball SA for this major continental series.

"As the home of Netball for the next three years leading up to the 2023 Netball World Cup‚ the Mother City will again showcase to the global stage that it can host major events in a safe environment despite the pandemic.

"We are looking forward to welcoming the teams to our city and for them to experience the beauty of the Mother City‚” said the City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith.