CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - MARCH 07: Minister of Sport and Recreation, Tokozile Xasa, during the 2023 Netball World Cup Bid Announcement. Picture: GRANT PITCHER / GALLO IMAGES
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - MARCH 07: Minister of Sport and Recreation, Tokozile Xasa, during the 2023 Netball World Cup Bid Announcement. Picture: GRANT PITCHER / GALLO IMAGES

Cape Town has won the right to host the 2023 Netball World Cup‚ beating a strong bid from Auckland‚ New Zealand‚ for the sport’s flagship event.

International Netball Federation (INF) president Molly Rhone made the announcement to rowdy applause from players‚ coaches and administrators.

The Cape Town International Convention Centre, where Thursday’s announcement was made‚ will be transformed to host the 16-team competition in five years. It is the first time an African city has earned the right to host the World Cup since its inception in 1963.

The 2023 tournament will be the 16th staging of the World Cup.

“We were delighted to receive two exceptional bids and the INF board was satisfied that both Netball New Zealand and Netball SA would be capable of hosting a successful and thrilling NWC2023‚” Rhone said.

“The INF board decided that the significant investment that the SA government and the Western Cape were prepared to make over the next four years in netball facilities and coaching programmes in SA‚ the African continent and beyond would deliver a greater impact on the development of global netball.

“It is an exciting time for netball. Our sport is growing in popularity at an unprecedented rate throughout the world. There is increasing competitiveness between the top nations and now three teams from Africa feature in the top 10 of the INF world rankings.

“We look forward to working with the organising committee to bring the INF’s most important event to SA in 2023.”