The International Netball Federation (INF) has unveiled plans to broaden the global appeal of the sport, helping to encourage girls everywhere to take it up, form teams and grow it to become a major worldwide game.
Its initiative has begun with a new logo and rebrand, but, more importantly, there is now a plan in place to aim to grow the sport and use it to create a better world. The strategic plan has three core strategies based around seven essential values, with the aim of building on a previous plan launched by the INF in 2016.
The first core strategy is ‘Grow’, aiming at increasing participation in the sport. This means member associations, including England, will be engaged in getting more youngsters to take up the sport in the first place. Netball coaching courses will be part of this plan, as they will help those with potential develop their talents. Increased revenue and reach will also be part of this element.
A second element will be ‘Play’, which will focus on developing the game with a series of “world class” tournaments around the world, while a third will be ‘Inspire’, a pledge to “harness the power of netball to change lives”.
Many girls who have taken up the sport in England will testify to the positive effects it has had on them, including better health, learning team-work skills and building friendships.
The list of values focuses on issues like integrity, teamwork, excellence and giving players a voice.
World Netball president Liz Nicholl said the plan represents “a vision to create a sport open to all, allowing netballers to embrace the opportunities the sport brings as well as achieving their full potential”.
The launch of the plan comes just over a year before the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, where England will seek to defend the gold medal they won in Australia in 2018. Netball has been part of the games since 1998.