DStv Netball Challenge Stars Shine for the Baby Proteas

netball26 March 2024 11:21
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Phophi Nematangari © Netball SA

The Baby Proteas soared to victory, securing a coveted spot in the Netball World Youth Cup amidst thunderous applause from a packed crowd at the University of Pretoria's Rembrandt Hall. Led by Precious Mthembu, the team's triumphant performance has earned them a place among the three teams representing the African continent at the global tournament in Gibraltar in 2025.

Mthembu meticulously selected a formidable 12-player squad, which boasted an impressive 100 per cent win record in the qualifying tournament. Notably, nine of the players honed their skills in different editions of the DSTV Schools Netball Challenge (DSNC). Karla Victor, named Player of the Tournament, was part of the C&N Sekondêre Meisieskool Oranje team that clinched the inaugural title in the Botho division. Sunel Smit and Renezia Andrews also tasted victory with their former schools, showcasing the talent nurtured through the DSNC platform.

The DSNC, a collaborative effort between MultiChoice, South African Schools Netball, the Department of Sport, Arts, and Culture, and the Department of Basic Education, serves as a springboard for aspiring netball stars from schools across the nation. It provides a competitive arena for players to showcase their skills and catch the eye of national team selectors for both the Spar Proteas and the Baby Proteas.

Mthembu emphasised the pivotal role of early competition experience in player development, noting its profound impact on their performance and personal growth.

"The more opportunities a player gets to compete, the better they become. Exposure to various competitions at a young age is invaluable. For instance, Karla participated in the Telkom Netball League while still in matric, a testament to her talent and potential. With players like Jade Atkins, still in matric, the future looks bright. The Spar Proteas have something to look forward to; these players represent the future of netball," remarked Mthembu.

Registration for the fourth edition of the DSNC remains open until 31 March, with the national finals scheduled for 12 - 13 July 2024.


Giada Prinsloo - Helpmekaar Kollege

Sunel Smit - Potchefstroom Gimnasium

Favour Umeh - Hoër Volkskool Heidelberg

Phophi Nematangari - Hoërskool Montana

Karla Maria Victor - C&N Sekondêre Meisieskool Oranje

Lisa Ingwersen - Hoër Meisieskool Bloemhof

Renezia Andrews - Paarl Girls High School

Sanmari Visser - Hoërskool Duineveld

Kyla Dames - Paarl Girls High School