RECENTLY crowned M1 Nations Cup champion, Desert Jewels, has its eyes set on the next target, which is to qualify for the 2023 Netball World Cup after outclassing highly ranked nations in Singapore last week.
The Namibian netball team that is currently ranked 33 in the world last participated at the M1 nations cup in 2012 where the team finished in third place.
Seven years later, the team remained the only undefeated nation in the tournament after drawing once and winning all its remaining games, including the final against host nation Singapore where Namibia won by 49 – 42.
The team received a hero’s welcome yesterday at the Hosea Kutako International airport and also received a congratulatory message from the ministry of sport, youth and national service on behalf of the government.
Deputy Minister of sport, Agnes Tjongarero, applauded the girls for their tenacity and hard work in outclassing other teams and coming out victorious.
“Congratulations and well done to the girls, you deserved it. Now it’s time to celebrate and move on the next objective, which is to hopefully qualify for the 2023 Netball world cup which will take place in South Africa. Let’s start immediately to prepare for qualifications now,” she said.
Main sponsor of the Desert jewel, DEBMARINE Namibia’s Chief Financial Officer, Willy Mertens, said that the organisation is proud to notice that all its dedication towards the team has paid off.
“DEBMARINE has invested in the Desert Jewels for the past three years and in addition to the N$500 000 given towards preparations, we would like to add an incentive bonus of N$7 000 to each and every single player that represented Namibia in Singapore,” he said.
In addition to the Debmarine sponsorship, government also gave Netball Namibia N$200 000 to prepare for the M1 Nations Cup.