PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA-- The bid by Netball South Africa to host the 2023 Netball World Cup has received a major boost with the government declaring its support.

This was confirmed by Deputy Sports Minister Gert Oosthuizen on the opening day of the Spar Netball Championships in Port Elizabeth Monday.

South Africa, ranked fifth in the world in the game, is bidding against one of the game's superpowers, New Zealand.

The 2018 Spar netball championships is being played on a district rather than provincial basis, as was the case in previous years. About 1,500 players have converged in the Friendly City to compete and the organisers are hoping to showcase South Africa's readiness to host the 2023 event.

A bid book was formally submitted to the International Netball Federation in London last week and NSA President Cecilia Molokwane says: Netball is the biggest female sport in the country, and has never hosted any World Cup. We think is the time to host one. The World Cup has been hosted by male dominated sports.

This is also part of NSA's aim to take the game to the people. As part of her centenary year, late struggle stalwart Albertin Sisulu was presented with Proteas colours.


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