JOHANNESBURG – Looking to build on the progress of 2016, Proteas coach Norma Plummer named a 26-member squad for a training camp in Pretoria in July.
The former Australian coach will be looking to get a head start ahead of an international season that includes the Quad Series, the Diamond Challenge, and two Tests against Fiji.
Plummer and her assistant Nicole Cusack watched the last two weekends of the eight-week Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League (BFNPL).
“We watched the play-off stages of the competition, and so were able to see how the players performed under pressure,” said Plummer.
“We have also watched videos of the other matches, so we got a very good idea of which players stood out.
Four members of the squad – Lenize Potgieter, Bongiwe Msomi, Erin Burger and Karla Mostert – did not play in the BFNPL because they were playing overseas.
Plummer said she had followed their performances.
“I watched Erin and Karla playing in the Australian competition, and I was able to watch the others by live streaming,” Plummer said.
“They have all done very well. Bongi was the player of the match in the final of the super league in England.
“I have also been in contact with their coaches, so I know what they have achieved.”
Plummer hoped the quartet’s experience in the competitive overseas leagues would inspire the rest of the squad.
A team of 26 will be announced at the end of the training camp.
“We will be looking for players who can push the Proteas to greater things,” Plummer said.
“They have reduced the goal difference against the top teams, and are getting to the stage where they can really challenge them.”
The Jaguars, who won the BFNPL, leave later this month for New Zealand, where they will play in an international club tournament.
Plummer said this would be a fantastic experience for them, and would assist the Jaguars who were in the national training squad.
Proteas training squad:
Shooters: Danelle Lochner (WC), Deanke Rohde (GP), Helene Steyn (WC), Ina-Marie Venter (GP), Lenize Potgieter (GP), Lindie Lombard (GP), Maryka Holtzhausen (FS), Renske Stoltz (NW), Sigi Burger (NW)
Centre Court: Bongiwe Msomi (KZN), Erin Burger (GP), Izette Griesel (GP), Khayiswa Chawane (FS), Marilize de Bruin (GP), Nadia Pienaar (GP), Rome Dreyer (NW), Precious Mthembu (KZN)
Defence: Fikile Mkhuzangwe (NW), Karla Mostert (FS), Juline Rossouw (WC), Phumza Maweni (WC), Shadine van der Merwe (GP), Tanya Mostert (FS), Rochelle Loubser (WC), Zanele Vimbela (GO), Zanne-Marie Pienaar (GP)