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Banyana Banyana hail South Africa for winning 2023 Netball World Cup hosting rights

05:03 GMT+3 12/03/2019
Banyana Banyana v Mali, November 2018
The southern African nation will stage the quadrennial event after the country beat New Zealand to the hosting rights

South Africa women coach Desiree Ellis and forward Noko Matlou have lauded the country for securing the rights to hosts the 2023 Netball World Cup in Cape Town.

International Netball Federation president Molly Rhone recently announced the South African city as the host for the 16th edition after this year's event in Liverpool, England from July 12-21.

This means South Africa will become the first country in the continent of Africa to stage the 16-team competition.

And Banyana Banyana gaffer, who led her side to a first-ever Fifa Women's World Cup qualification in 2018 expressed her delight.

“I remember I was once asked to do a video of support for Netball South Africa for them to win the bid just before we flew to last year’s Africa Women’s Cup of Nations in Ghana,” Ellis told Safa.

“And to return back in the country following our participation in this year’s Cyprus Cup tournament to such news, it is just great. Not so long ago, our National Under-17 Women’s team qualified for the 2018 Fifa U-17 Women’s World in Uruguay.

“Our Banyana Banyana national team qualified for their first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup tournament, while the likes of Thembi Kgatlana walked away with two major accolades at this year’s CAF Awards. This goes to show that we, as women, are doing something right in this sporting world. We just need to keep on working hard as a collective.”

For 2008 African Women's Player of the Year, she believes hosting the international event will boost the interest and determination of South African women in sports.

“Being a female athlete is not easy. There are a lot of challenges we as women encounter in the sporting world and having victories such as these, makes all the battles that we go through all worth it," she said.

"The hosting of this international sporting event will inspire most girls who want to pursue any sporting coat as a career and also believe that they too, can become whatever they want in life.”

“I would also like to thank the South African Football Association (SAFA) for their undying supporting in helping women such as myself, to represent their nation at the highest level. I would not have reached this important milestone in my career (reaching 150 caps) if it was not for their unwavering support.”