South Africa secure 2019 Africa Netball Cup title
The SPAR Proteas' next challenge will be hosting England for a three-Test series at the end of November, live on Sky Sports
By Emma Thurston
Last Updated: 07/11/19 1:11pm
South Africa secured the 2019 Africa Netball Cup title after a clean-sweep of victories in the competition.
The SPAR Proteas completed their series of six victories with a 72-53 result against Zambia in Cape Town.
Earlier in the competition, they created a new South African record for goals scored in a Test match following their 116-10 win over Lesotho.
The last time that the SPAR Proteas lost to an African country was at the 2015 World Cup when the Malawi Queens triumphed in the opening round.
The competition marks the outfit's first under their new head coach Dorette Badenhorst.
Badenhorst, who was part of the management team at the Netball World Cup in Liverpool, steps into the role after Norma Plummer's departure at the end of the tournament.
The new head coach took the opportunity to hand out first caps to Lefébre Rademan and Monique Reyneke during the competition while Izette Griesel gained her 50th.
View this post on Instagram
We are about welcoming the great talent, mentoring, loving and supporting each other for the greatness and depth in our team/in @netballsa. No better deserving new caps than these two amazing players, really is a blessing to be able to back you up... all the way💪🏼💖! #WeLoveYouBoth💖💖🤗🤗 #GCT #BongiMsomiNetballFullCircle 🙏🏼
Speaking ahead of the competition, South Africa's captain Bongiwe Msomi expressed the need for the side to press on from their fourth-place finish at the World Cup.
"We need to ensure that whatever that made us perform really well [in 2019] can be kept going until the 2023 World Cup in Cape Town to ensure that the results are there because if not, then it will be a tough task," Msomi said to Sky Sports.
"Obviously other countries are looking forward to improving and playing some great netball as much as we are. So, we can't sit back now and think that we've got this. It's never like that. We have to try and maintain, or even be better, than we were this year."
The 2019 Africa Netball Cup will have provided the whole squad, and their new head coach, with a solid base to work from and their next task is preparing for England's arrival at the end of November.
The Vitality Roses and South Africa will play three Tests in Cape Town on consecutive days - November 29, 30 and December 1 - and the matches will mark their first with each other since their Bronze Medal duel in Liverpool.
Jess Thirlby's Roses will be arriving without some of their more experienced players as captain Serena Guthrie takes a year out from the sport and the duo of Jo Harten and Geva Mentor have both stepped away from the international game for six months.
The current Roses squad have the experience of a behind-closed-doors Test series in Australia and New Zealand to work from and Thirlby has spent more than 40 days with most of those involved in the full-time programme.
At the turn of the calendar year, both England and South Africa will be part of the Vitality Netball Nations Cup 2020 alongside the new world champions New Zealand and Jamaica.
Sky Sports is your home of netball and live action returns with the Vitality Roses' three-Test tour to South Africa. The first Test from the Velodrome in Cape Town will be shown live on November 29 at 5.00pm.