Netball Jamaica launches Road to Cape Town campaign ahead of 2023 World Cup

By Sports Desk April 21, 2023
Netball Jamaica President, Tricia Robinson, addressing the crowd at Friday's campaign launch. Netball Jamaica President, Tricia Robinson, addressing the crowd at Friday's campaign launch. 876stream

It was a happy and hopeful environment at the Summit in Kingston on Friday when Netball Jamaica kicked off their Road to Cape Town campaign ahead of the 2023 Vitality Netball World Cup in Cape Town, South Africa.

With just 100 days to go before the start of the World Cup scheduled for July 28-August 6, Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls are going full speed ahead in their preparation for the long-awaited showdown.

In anticipation of the excitement, President of Netball Jamaica, Tricia Robinson, said a provisional team of 23 players will be selected in May before the squad is cut down to 15 in June for the event.

The first edition of the tournament to be held on the continent of Africa will see 16 teams taking part with Jamaica slated to compete in Pool C against the hosts, Wales and Sri Lanka.

“We are hopeful that our selections will dominate the courts in Cape Town,” Robinson said.

Our girls have worked hard and shown tremendous dedication over the past few years and I know that they are ready to take on this challenge,” she added.

Jamaica qualified automatically for the tournament due to their current global ranking of four.

In addition to getting the Sunshine Girls in shape, Netball Jamaica is labouring to secure funding for the World Cup as well as their pre-tournament camp in South Africa.

Approximately $51 million is needed to get the team to South Africa and the local governing body is responsible for raising the funds independently.

So far, $25 million has been secured through sponsorship. Robinson underscored that the organisation is grateful for the contribution from entities like lead sponsor Berylium Limited and main sponsors the National Baking Company, Wray & Nephew and Seprod Limited, who have been playing a critical role in helping Jamaica prepare for the World Cup.

Gilbert has joined the cause in providing kit and ball support while Wisynco is serving as the hydration sponsor. Marathon Insurance Brokers sponsorship of the Elite League has also aided in the team’s preparation.

Additionally, the government has, so far, committed $10 million to partially cover the cost of accommodation, ground transportation, luggage and airport transfer for the Sunshine Girls, while the team’s overseas travel insurance will be covered by the Jamaica Athletes Insurance Plan (JAIP).

Robinson remains hopeful that more sponsors will come on board and support the national team.

“I invite all Jamaicans to join us in supporting our group as we go for gold. Whether you are cheering from home or joining us at the World Cup, let us make Jamaica proud!” Robinson said.

Individuals will soon be able to contribute to the team through the popular crowd funding platform, GoFundMe.

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    Barbados maintained their stranglehold of the Jean Pierre Caribbean Youth Netball Championships, as the island's Under-16 netballers secured a third-consecutive hold on the title after bettering Grenada in the finals at the Beausejour Indoor Facility in St Lucia, on Wednesday.

    The young Gems, led by goalshooter and tournament Most Valuable Player (MVP) Keanna Harte, outclassed their opponents 27-19 to again end the tournament with an unbeaten record intact.

    Harte netted 19 of her 21 attempts, as goal-attack Tyesha Trotman scored seven of her 10 attempts, while Tyra Griffith had a solitary goal from three attempts. Grenada's effort was led by Keisha Mathurine who scored 17 goals from 22 attempts and goal-attack Reshonna Francis, who had two goals from three attempts.

    Dominica, St Vincent and the Grenadines and hosts St Lucia were the other participating countries.

    To stamp their dominance, the Baby Gems also took home the majority of awards on offer. They won prizes for best uniform, most disciplined team, best spirited team, best goal average and best defending team, and placed second in the shooting competition.

    Harte along with Deeya Forde-Haynes, Chelsea Best, Trotman and Griffith were also named in the top 16 players of the tournament.

    President of the Barbados Netball Association, Dr Carmeta Douglin was full of praise for the team. She said the impressive showing by the Cameron Greenidge-coached team was as a result of hard work and dedication by the juniors.

    “A big congratulations to our Baby Bajan Gems who have done extremely well once again at the Jean Pierre Caribbean Netball tournament. They have dominated this tournament for the last three years winning every game that they played and this year in St Lucia they were victorious in every game in the preliminary round, in the knockout and now they are the champions once again, so congratulations to the entire team," she told Barbados TODAY

    “They usually start very slow in the first and second quarters, but they built the momentum and by the third quarter they really outplayed everyone. They also captured a number of different awards, and we would like to congratulate every player,” Douglin added.

  • T&T's Wallace-Joseph faces backlash for social media post about International Transgender Day on Easter Sunday T&T's Wallace-Joseph faces backlash for social media post about International Transgender Day on Easter Sunday

    Trinidad and Tobago’s Suncorp Super Netball star Sam Wallace-Joseph has come under fire for her stance on the International Transgender Day of Visibility falling on the same day as Easter Sunday.

    Held every March 31 since 2009, the day has been set up as a celebration of pride and awareness, while aiming to recognise trans and gender-diverse achievements. Wallace-Joseph, a two-time NSW Swifts champion, shared a clickbait headline from a Canadian outlet that insinuated United States President Joe Biden had "declared" Easter Sunday would be the recurring day for International Transgender Day of Visibility moving forward.

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  • Grange offers extra incentive to players as St Patrick's, Corinaldi Avenue cop Insports primary schools' all-island netball, football titles Grange offers extra incentive to players as St Patrick's, Corinaldi Avenue cop Insports primary schools' all-island netball, football titles

    St Patrick’s Primary of Kingston and St Andrew retained their INSPORTS Primary Schools All-Island Netball title, while St James’ Corinaldi Avenue Primary were crowned football champion on Tuesday.

    St Patrick’s defeated Bethabara of Manchester 23-21 in a close encounter played at the Leila Robinson Court at Independence Park, while Corinaldi edged Rosseau Primary, also of Kingston and St Andrew, 6-5 on penalties after battling to a 0-0 draw in regulation and extra time.

    Both all-island champions walked away with $200,000 each, as the runners up collected $125,000 each.

    Third-place finishers White Horses Primary of St Thomas and Portland’s Port Antonio Primary earned $75,000 for their efforts in the netball and football competitions respectively. White Horses defeated Corinaldi of St James 20-17, and Port Antonio bettered Holland Primary 3-1 on penalties.

    The fourth-placed teams received $50,000 each.

    Both winning coaches, Lecia Walters of St Patrick’s and Recardo Esmie of Corinaldi were rewarded with $10,000 each.

    Shantae Powell of St Patrick’s and Donovan Carey of Corinaldi were the Netball and Football MVPs. This was especially nice for Carey, who suffered a broken leg last year.

    While applauding the winners, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports, Olivia “Babsy” Grange, who assisted young Carey last year, revealed an additional incentive.

    “It has been a thrilling season with fantastic performances from all of our teams. This is a testament to all the hard work and dedication that has been put in over the season and I am proud to see such wonderful talents on display,” Grange said during the closing ceremony at the National Arena.

    “In addition to the prize money, twenty (20) football students (male and female) will be offered the opportunity to attend a one-week football camp to be hosted by the Spanish club OSASUNA from April 8-17 at the Barbican AstroTurf,” she shared.

    “This will be an incredible opportunity for our young athletes to hone their skills and learn from some of the best in the business. Furthermore, five primary school coaches will also be offered the chance to attend the camp to enhance their knowledge and expertise in the world of football,” the minister added.

    That said, Grange made mention of Jamaica and Chelsea’s rising sensation Dujuan “Whisper” Richards, who was discovered from this same competition.

    “A few years back for the 2015/2016 season, we unearthed one Dujuan ‘Whisper’ Richards of Harbour View Primary, who went on to Kingston College and made a name for himself in the Manning Cup and now, he is at one of the biggest clubs in the world – Chelsea FC,” she noted.

    “This is the kind of impact we want coming out of these football and netball competitions. These programmes will enable us to bring to the fore, the best talent in a competitive environment in line with INSPORTS mandate of unearthing talent in every nook and cranny of Jamaica,” Grange explained.

    The INSPORTS competitions – arguably the best of their kind anywhere in the region – started in December 2023 with 280 schools involving 4,200 kids in netball and 5,600 in football of which 560 were girls, as each team needed to have 2 girls.

    Result

    Netball

    St Patrick’s Primary 23 vs Bethabara Primary 21

    White Horses 20 vs Corinaldi Primary 17

    Football

    Corinaldi 0 vs Rosseau 0 (Corinaldi won 6-5 on penalties)

    Port Antonio 0 vs Holland 0 (Port Antonio won 3-1 on penalties)

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