Most people who play netball would admit that the sport has had an image problem in the past. For many people, their only experience of the game is at school, when it can be a relatively sedate affair.
However, the perception of netball has been transformed by the success of the England netball team – the Roses – and it’s now seen as a fast-paced and exciting sport, Joanna Adams, CEO of England Netball, recently told Reuters.
“Young girls now see incredible athletic, bright women playing this amazing game and it’s not a schoolgirl image any more,” Ms Adams stated.
She explained that they have been working hard to change people’s perceptions of the sport, particularly through the Superleague. She also revealed that Nike signing a multi-year deal to supply the Roses with their kit was “game changing”.
Ms Adams pointed out that netball is now the fastest growing team sport in Britain. Following the Roses’ success at the Commonwealth Games, 130,000 women either said they returned to the sport or took it up for the first time.
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England are set to compete for the Netball World Cup on home soil this year too, which is only likely to boost the sport’s popularity further.
In a recent interview with Sky Sports, Ama Agbeze, England netball player, said that she believes English netball needs a gold medal at the World Cup to help the sport continue to build its momentum.