African netball has made great strides in the past few years and could
challenge for a medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Australian Gold
Cost next year.
That's the view of Australian Diamonds head coach Liza Alexander, who said on
Wednesday that the Proteas had blossomed under World Cup-winning coach Norma Plummer.
"They have improved their physicality on the court and have also learned to assert
themselves throughout all four quarters," said Alexander.
"I think the most important thing is they have learnt to play competitively at
the highest level and I think the Quad Series has been instrumental in developing their new attitude."
Quad Series, involving Australia, New Zealand, England and South
moves to England and South Africa next month.
In the London leg, the
Proteas will play just one match, against the Diamonds, on January 20.
The action then moves to the Ellis Park indoor Arena, where the Proteas
will play the New Zealand Silver Ferns and the
Alexander said the Quad Series would do much to help the teams prepare for the
"It will be our last international outing before Commonwealth Games, so we will
be able to try out various combinations and see what we need to do before the biggest event of the year," she said.
have chosen what we believe is the strongest squad to travel to London
Johannesburg. We have had a very successful year, winning every match,
except one against the Silver Ferns. But we came back strongly to win
the Constellation Cup and we plan to carry on the same way in 2018."
She said the dramatic improvement by African teams such as South Africa, Malawi
and Uganda was important for netball internationally.
"Netball is increasing its global footprint, and maybe one day we can find ourselves
competing in the Olympic Games," said Alexander.
"The rise of netball in Africa and Asia is essential for that."