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Netball Boost from Sky

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In a move designed to increase the popularity of the sport, Sky Sports are now covering live Netball Superleague.

Sky Sports are hoping that showing Netball Superleague on their channel will really give the sport a boost.

This definitely worked back in 1994, when Sky took over the darts and started their own competition, the PDC World Darts Championships. This tournament, as well as others, is still shown on Sky Sports today, with many followers travelling miles to watch the best darts players in the world. Some of the world’s best ever players have competed in the tournament, including the likes of Eric Bristow, Phil Taylor and Michael Van Gerwen.

Let’s take a quick look at the game of netball. The aim is to score goals in the oppositions’ hoop. (This game is only meant for females, however boys are allowed to play in High 5 netball, which is played at primary school.) Each team has seven players all having a certain job, like shooting or defending. No position is allowed everywhere on the court, unlike popular team sports such as football and hockey.

Certainly, Sky’s coverage of the netball superleague, twinned with the Commonwealth Games, has inspired more people to try the sport. In Scotland alone, the popularity of netball has increased by an unbelievable 58%. This is higher than any other sport.

Tamsin Greenway, who plays for Surrey Storm, has said, “Netball is benefiting from greater TV exposure.”

With more people playing, turning up to watch and following on TV, Netball is definitely on the up.

One young netball fan said, “I am so excited about going to watch my favourite team, Loughborough Lightnings, play. But I have a bit of a wait because a lot of the games are sold out.”

It’ll be fascinating to see whether netball continues to grow at the present rate. For now Sky seem to have hit a jackpot with the sport.

 

Eleanor, Year 7

Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar, Alford