South Africa announce Netball World Cup preparations including Test series versus Wales
Watch every match of the Vitality Netball World Cup 2019 live on Sky Sports from July, 12-21.
Last Updated: 16/04/19 5:01pm
South Africa have announced their Vitality Netball World Cup 2019 preparations, which include a pre-tournament series against Wales, and have finalised their squad announcement date.
With just two and half months to go before the tournament starts in Liverpool on July 12, and every match being shown live on Sky Sports, head coach Norma Plummer has formalised the SPAR Proteas' road to the opening day of the competition.
Plummer, who led the Australian Diamonds to two World Cup gold medals, will be in South Africa for a training camp from April 28 to May 5 and will announce her final squad on Wednesday, June 26.
"The eight players competing in Australia [Karla Pretorius, Phumza Maweni, Ine-Marí Venter], New Zealand [Lenize Potgieter] and England [Bongi Msomi, Shadine van der Merwe, Maryka Holtzhausen, Sigi Burger] will obviously not be able to take part in the camp, but we will work with the rest of the squad, preparing for the World Cup," said head coach Plummer.
There will be 21 invited players that will arrive in Pretoria on Saturday, April 28 and the training camp will commence in earnest the following day.
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The head coach also noted that international commitments will mean that the whole team will not be able to get together until their arrival in Wales for pre-World Cup Tests.
"We leave South Africa on June 28 and have four days preparation before the two Test matches on July 4 and 5," added Plummer.
The two matches against Wales, who have not qualified for the World Cup, will be played in Cardiff.
The SPAR Proteas will look to gel quickly ahead of their first match against Trinidad and Tobago which takes place on the opening day of the competition at the M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool.
South Africa have been drawn in Group C for the Preliminaries Stage One alongside Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Fiji. Following their meeting with the Calypso Girls, they will then face Fiji 24 hours later and the Sunshine Girls on Sunday, July 14.
Plummer and all within the squad will be eager to replicate an extremely positive Netball Quad Series that included beating the Commonwealth Games gold medallists England.
A further incentive to deliver a strong tournament in Liverpool is the fact that South Africa will be hosting the 2023 edition of the Netball World Cup in Cape Town.
It will be the first time that the competition will be held in Africa and Netball South Africa's proposal was selected by the International Netball Federation (INF) ahead of another 'exceptional bid' submitted by Netball New Zealand. For now though, their focus will remain fixed on Liverpool.
Watch every match of the 2019 Vitality Netball World Cup live on Sky Sports. Coverage starts on Friday, July 12 plus keep up to date with all of the latest competition news, results and enjoy in-depth features at SkySports.com/netball