Sun | Aug 20, 2017

Rhone gives Youth Cup update

Published:Monday | December 19, 2016 | 12:00 AMRachid Parchment

International Netball Federation President Molly Rhone says that preparations are going slowly for the World Youth Cup in Botswana next year, but she is confident that the tournament will go ahead smoothly.

Rhone, who is currently back home in Jamaica, said that she visited the country and toured the venues at the University of Botswana in Gaborone, the capital. She found that the facilities at the institutions had undergone changes that her federation had not expected.

"The university had a new complex built," she said.

"When I had gone there first and spoke with the university officials, they were going to have a building with two courts. But when we visited, we saw that one end of the gymnasium was now set up for boxing, so it can now hold only one court.

"This means they have to now go and make do with a second championship court. You now have to go and retrofit a whole convention centre. So that has added a bit of expense for them but I think the teams are really looking forward to the competition next year."

Botswana will become the first African nation to host an international netball tournament when the competition runs from July 8 to 16 next year. Rhone said that as a result, everyone is looking forward to it.

Botswana Netball Association (BONA) President Tebogo Lebotse Sebego said recently that the Cook Islands, who hosted the event in 2009, had given her inspiration that they too can put on a successful tournament.

"When we put in the bid, we knew that we were punching above our weight. But as a small nation with great ambitions, punching above our weight is our inspiration," she said.

Jamaica's Under-21 Sunshine Girls have been drawn in Pool C with the hosts, the Cook Islands, Malaysia and Uganda.