A reception took place in Belfast today for the Northern Ireland Netball Team ahead of their appearance at the World Cup in July
Sixteen teams from across the world are due to compete at the tournament which takes place in Liverpool from 12 – 21 July. The Northern Ireland Team, who currently sit in 8th place in the world rankings, qualified for this year’s World Cup with a convincing 57-42 victory over a strong Wales team.
Speaking at the reception Department for Communities Permanent Secretary Tracy Meharg said: “I would like to congratulate the Northern Ireland Netball team on qualifying for the World Cup and wish them well for an enjoyable and successful tournament.”
“By reaching the Netball World Cup and showcasing their sporting talent, the team will hopefully inspire the next generation of players from Northern Ireland to emulate their success and go on to participate and excel in sport.”
Geoff Wilson, Chair of Netball NI, said: “With three weeks to go until our opening match against current World Champions Australia at the Netball World Cup, we truly are in the final stages of preparation. We are delighted to be hosted by the Department for Communities Permanent Secretary Tracy Meharg and to have her support and recognition is a huge boost to our squad, coaches and management team. This event is a perfect beginning to the number of activities we have over the next week that will give our supporters the opportunity to come out and see our PwC Warriors in action before leaving for Liverpool.”
Dan Ryan, Head Coach of the Northern Ireland Netball Team, said: “I’m delighted to be invited here along with the team by the Department for Communities Permanent Secretary Tracy Meharg. We’ve been working hard in our preparation so it is super to have some time off court to let everyone know what we are doing in these final stages before the World Cup. It’s a huge event for netball and for many of our team, including me, it’s the first time we’ll be competing on such a stage, having so much support from the Department for Communities and Tracy in particular is greatly appreciated. We’ll be on court three weeks from today and playing hard not only for the result but to make our supporters proud.”
Notes to editors:
- The Northern Ireland National Netball Team have qualified for the 2019 Netball World Cup, the 15th edition of the premier international netball tournament which takes place in Liverpool from 12 – 21 July.
- The NI Netball Team was founded in 1955 and debuted in the 1st World Cup in Eastbourne in 1963 finishing in 11th place. They have been regulars at subsequent World Cups with 4 top 10 finishes.
- The team currently sit in 8th place in the world rankings and qualified for this year’s World Cup with a convincing 57-42 victory over a strong Wales team. The team’s other recent achievements include winning the Nations Cup in 2009 and 2015 and achieving a third and fourth place finish at the European championships in 2010 and 2011.
- BBC Sport and Sky Sports will cover all of Northern Ireland’s matches during the tournament.
- Media enquiries to DfC Press Office on 028 9082 3505 or email: Press Office. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer on 028 9037 8110.
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