The SPAR Protea team prior to their match against Uganda. Picture: REG CALDECOTT / GETTY IMAGES
The SPAR Protea team prior to their match against Uganda. Picture: REG CALDECOTT / GETTY IMAGES

The 12 Proteas players could be millionaires by the end of the weekend if they win the 2019 Netball World Cup in Liverpool on Sunday.

Domestic league sponsors Telkom promised the South Africans‚ who qualified for the semifinals on Wednesday after beating Uganda for their fifth victory running in the competition‚ bonuses of R1m each if they go all the way.

If they finish second‚ each player will get R500‚000.

As if that were not enough‚ the national side’s title sponsor Spar have dangled another carrot and the players will share R1m if they win the tournament.

They will share R750‚000 if they finish second and R500‚000 for a third-place finish.

The Proteas faced favourites England late on Thursday and even if they lose their semifinal spot is guarenteed.

The South Africans will face New Zealand or Australia in the semifinals on Saturday.

“I think it is only fair that we pay these ladies such monies‚ they have earned them‚” said Netball SA president Cecilia Molokwane.

“Even before we talked money with them‚ they were here doing the most‚ delivering and winning games that have put us in the position that we are.

“I think we need to reward great work when we see it‚ in this team I see greatness and believe that they can deliver silverware for the country.

“This will be the first time that netball players in SA earn such monies.

“The sport is definitely growing in the country‚ we are seeing an uptake in the sport and also during the recently concluded Telkom Netball League‚ we saw more players getting paid more than what they had previously earned in the past and more sponsors coming on board.

“We could easily have 12 new millionaires at the end of this week‚ imagine how many lives we will change and be impacted by this.

“Coach Norma [Plummer] and her support staff have done very well to give us a team that we have today‚ and I think it is only that we reward them accordingly‚” added Molokwane.

Since the tournament started last week‚ the 5th-ranked Proteas have enjoyed a rich vein of form with five wins on the spin against Fiji‚ Trinidad and Tobago‚ Jamaica‚ Scotland and Uganda.