VNWC2019 Opposition in Focus: South Africa

The Vitality Roses are preparing to face South Africa in their third and final game of Preliminaries Stage Two at the Vitality Netball World Cup on Thursday 18th July.

The Lowdown

South Africa have previously competed in eight Netball World Cups and secured the silver medal at the World Championships in Birmingham in 1995; their highest position to date. Their second place position in 1995 came after South Africa’s 25 years of isolation following apartheid.

The fierce opponents are currently ranked fifth in the International Netball Federation’s World Rankings, which meant they automatically qualified for this year’s Vitality Netball World Cup.

Ones to Watch

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Bongiwe Msomi (WA) – A dynamic wing attack, Msomi is looking to captain the SPAR Proteas to victory this year and has previously represented South Africa in two World Cups; 2011 and 2015. She was part of the team that defeated the Vitality Roses in January during the Vitality Netball International Series, as part of the Netball Quad Series.

Lenize Potgieter (GA)  Potgieter’s combination of height (she’s over six feet tall) and athleticism make her a fierce competitor on the court and she’s now competing in her second World Cup. Netball isn’t her only sport, she is also a goal attack for a national ring tennis team alongside her mother and brother.

Karla Pretorius (GD) – Arguably one of the world’s best – if not the best – goal defence, she has over 80 caps for her country and is competing at her second World Cup in 2019. She reads the game expertly, has quick hands and great footwork to create tips and intercepts.

Familiar Faces

Bongiwe Msomi, who has over 100 caps under her belt, is a familiar face in the Vitality Netball Superleague as she spent the 2019 season plying her trade for Wasps Netball.

Sigi Burger, who was a late addition to the South African squad due to a training injury to Ine-Mari Venter, has enjoyed an amazing season for Surrey Storm with an impressive shooting percentage of 94% and the league’s highest average number of goals per match.

Joining them on court in green and gold throughout the Vitality Netball World Cup are Surrey Storm’s Shadine Van Der Merwe and Severn Stars’ Maryka Holtzhausen.

Head-to-Head

The Vitality Roses and the SPAR Proteas have met seven times at previous World Cups with England winning five of those clashes. However, South Africa came out on top in the most recent meeting between the two sides at the Netball Quad Series in January 2019. This generation of the Spar Proteas will be looking to secure a medal on English soil, ahead of the Roses, similarly to in 1995.

South Africa Squad in Full

Erin Burger, Izette Griesel, Maryka Holtzhausen, Chawane Khanyisa, Phumza Maweni, Bongiwe Msomi (c), Lenize Potgieter, Karla Pretorius (vice-captain), Renske Stoltz, Shadine Van Der Merwe, Ine Mari Venter, Vimbela Zanele.

Make sure you’re following England Netball on FacebookInstagram and Twitter for the latest news and updates throughout the Vitality Netball World Cup.

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