7 November 2012

Johannesburg, South Africa – After 4 weeks of gruelling netball in the Quad Series, the SPAR Proteas are feeling confident ahead of the Fast 5 tournament.

Pitted against Jamaica in their first match in Auckland, New Zealand on Friday, Fast 5 coach Lana Krige says that her team is ready. “We have had some great practise sessions, playing against teams like Australia and England. We are expecting a tough challenge from Jamaica, especially considering that Fowler is such a great shooter, but our game has got much faster since we last played Jamaica in June.”

The new format of the Fast 5 game excites Krige, as she says that it adds to the speed and skill of netball. “I first thought that this type of game would be less tactical, but it is just as technical. Your timing has to be spot on, and if there are no opportunities, you just have to go for it.” Krige says that in this model of the game there is an advantage for each disadvantage; “As shots can be taken from outside the goal circle there is a higher risk in rebounds, and centre passes are more difficult due to less options on attack, but there is also the advantage of more space on court.”

Considering that rolling substitutions are such a vital part of the Fast 5 format, Krige said that her team was one of variation. “When choosing the Fast 5 team, we needed to look at defenders who could carry the ball, and shooters that could take far shots. Players need to be good at speed work, and make the most of opportunities with limited players on court.” Simnikiwe Mdaka is the new captain for the side and has been coined as a player of “flair and speed.” Other players who did not play in the Quad Series that are joining the team are defender Nontle Gwavu and goal shooter Tsakane Mbewe.

The SPAR Proteas team playing in Fast 5 this weekend are; Simnikiwe Mdaka (Captain), Maryka Holtzhausen (Vice-Captain), Chrisna Bootha, Tsakane Mbewe, Bongiwe Msomi, Vanes-Mari du Toit, Karla Mostert, Nontle Gwavu, and Amanda Mynhardt.

South Africa take on Jamaica in the opening match on Friday 9 November, and play England later that day. For the full draw of the Fast 5 please click on the link below.