Namibia’s senior netball side, the Debmarine Desert Jewels, will today start their 2021 Spar Challenge Tri-Nations Series campaign with a clash against South Africa’s Spar Proteas in Cape Town, South Africa, and head coach Julene Meyer has promised her charges will go full out.
Speaking during yesterday’s pre-match press conference, Meyer said they will use the Tri-Nations Series as a stepping stone to improve their world rankings and going into today’s match, the Desert Jewels will take their A-game to the South Africans.
“This series is a great opportunity to up our rankings and to gain experience. This tournament is equally vital to ultimately help us qualify for the 2023 Netball World Cup,” said Meyer.
Playing against some of Africa’s best such as South Africa, who are ranked fifth, and Uganda who are ranked seventh in the world, will be beneficial to her squad, which comprises of a few young and upcoming players who need to gain much-needed exposure and experience.
On her side, Spar Proteas head coach Dorette Badenhorst said: “Playing Namibia will be great as they are one of the top ranked African countries. They won the 2019 M1 Cup in Singapore and that shows how strong of a team they are. It will be great for the girls to go out there and showcase their talents.”
After today’s match against South Africa, the Desert Jewels will move on to face the unpredictable She Cranes of Uganda on Friday. They will then again square off against South Africa the following day.
The Desert Jewels will continue with their campaign with a tie against the She Cranes of Uganda on 28 March, before facing Uganda again on 29 March. On the 30th of March, the Namibian ladies will face South Africa, before moving on to confront the SA President Invitational squad on 31 March.
Namibian netball has been on an upward trajectory following their historic win of the 13th edition of M1 Nations Cup in Singapore in 2019. The Desert Jewels defeated hosts Singapore on home turf in that final (49-42) to bring home their first ever M1 Nations Cup trophy.
The Debmarine Desert Jewels squad: Bittley Selma, Roetz Rachalle, Gomases Monica Shahin, Kutako Emmy, Kaspar Anna Kulaumone Ndeshitila, Garbers Juzelri, Shipanga Anna Etuhole, Kambatuku Jatjinda, Hanyanya Loide Tangeni, Mulenamaswe Mwale Kathy, Kamutushi Nanguloshi Eva Nyamningwa and Maharero Venyekerera.