Tricky Netball World Cup Draw for Dinaledi

  • Only two slots are reserved for African nations
  • SA are already in but won’t make it easy for Botswana


The Botswana senior women’s netball national team, Dinaledi, will start their Word Cup Qualifier campaign in Pretoria next week after being drawn in Pool A of the African Regional World Cup Qualifiers (August 21-27).

Dinaledi will face hosts South Africa then Namibia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
The teams are vying for a place in the 2023 Netball World Cup which will be held in Cape Town. Only two teams from the tournament will qualify for the 2023 event for which South Africa and Uganda have already booked their places.

Uganda is placed in Pool B with Eswatini, Malawi, Uganda, Zambia and Kenya.
The competition is divided into two pools from each of which the top two teams will qualify for the semifinals. If Botswana advances to the latter stages of the tournament, they will qualify for the World Cup.


Tricky affair
Botswana will have to finish in the top two of their pool to stand a chance to qualify for the semifinals. Hosts South Africa have already qualified but they will not be easy to deal with because they are using the tournament for match sharpness and selection purposes.
Zimbabwe, who made their maiden World Cup appearance in 2019, will be aiming to return to the global stage. The Zimbabweans made a good impression in their debut World Cup campaign, finishing eighth ahead of more experienced nations. Zimbabwe is also ranked 13th in the International Netball Federation (INF) World Rankings to demonstrate their strength in terms of global recognition.

Namibia will also be motivated to end 27 years of heartache as they have not qualified for the World Cup since 1995. Tanzania is the only inexperienced team in terms of World Cup participation in Pool A.

They are universally viewed as the minnows in the group but they should not be underestimated by their opponents. Tanzania is 41st in world rankings while Botswana is regarded as the 28th best team in the world.


The schedule
Dinaledi will face Namibia in the first game at 10am on August 21 at the University of Pretoria. The second game will be against the hosts a day later. Botswana will then face Tanzania on the third day before rounding up their pool games against Zimbabwe on August 25.

Botswana will be hopeful of advancing to the semifinals on August 26. If they are joined by South Africa and Uganda in the semifinals, they will automatically qualify for the World Cup as only two slots are left for African nations.