Karla Pretorius acknowledges the crowds after being named player of the tournament at the Vitality Netball World Cup played at M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool, England. Pic: Reg Caldecott

LIVERPOOL – Despite failing a podium finish for the SA netball team, there was some consolation after their wing defence Karla Pretorius was named Player of the 2019 Vitality Netball World Cup. 

Pretorius was honoured during the medal ceremony in front of a pact M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool on Sunday after the Australia -New Zealand final.

“I feel very honoured to have been named the best player of the World Cup," said Pretorius.

"You are only as good as those around you and the team did so well at this World Cup, and even though we won’t return home to South Africa with a medal.

"I know that we all put our hearts and souls into every game in Liverpool and can hold our heads high. 

"This good run was what inspired me to play as well as I did and I am grateful to have been recognised by the tournament and given this very special award."

The last South African to win the same award was Erin Burger, ironically the touring roommate of Pretorius. Burger won the award at the 2011 Netball World Cup in Singapore.

“When Erin won the award eight years ago it inspired me," said Pretorius.

"I have always believed that we can compete with the best in the world even though we don’t play as often as we would like against the top nations. 

"Me winning this award shows that South Africa have the talent, players and team to go to the top. I am excited about the future of the Proteas,” continued Pretorius. 

Pretorius returns to Australia on Monday to re-join The Sunshine Coast Lightning team for the remainder of the Super Netball League there. 

African News Agency (ANA)