Queens up to 7th
Netball Association of Malawi (Nam) has said the Queens, who have risen by two steps on the world rankings, need to play more test matches to improve further on the International Netball Federation (INF) chart.
Nam General Secretary, Carol Bapu, called for more test matches after the Queens rose from position nine to seven out of 42 teams in the world and third out of eight in Africa on the revised INF rankings released Wednesday.
Malawi, who have probably moved two steps up following their wins over Northern Ireland and Uganda at the Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England, in July 2019, are third in Africa behind leaders, South Africa and second-placed Uganda.
Bapu said they hoped that the Queens could improve further on the rankings.
“Just before the World Cup, we slumped from sixth to ninth position and we know that we can do better than this. We just need to play more test matches. As you can see, our counterparts were active and gained more points than us.
“To achieve this, we need the support of all major stakeholders, including the government and private sector,” she said.
Former Queens skipper, Emmie Waya-Chongwe, concurred with Bapu saying
the senior side must target test matches against teams in the top six.
“If we play against top rated sides, we would gain more points to catapult the side to a better position,” she said.
Waya-Chongwe said Nam must press for an in-door court to attract the top rated sides such as Australia, New Zealand and Jamaica.
The latest rankings reflect matches played up to July 21.
Australia, despite finishing as runners up when they surrendered the World Cup throne to New Zealand, remain at the top of the rankings.
New Zealand are second whereas England are third, with Jamaica occupying the fourth slot. South Africa, who finished fourth at the World Cup, are ranked fifth while Uganda remain sixth.