Our Game

Our history, our heroes and more about our game – Netball.

History

Netball is an integral part of New Zealand’s dynamic sporting culture. Steeped in history, it was introduced to New Zealand as ‘women’s basketball’ in 1906 – a nine-a-side game played on grass, with baskets tied to posts at either end of the court.

2000

The Silver Ferns play a World 7 team featuring Kath Harby (Australia), Elaine Davis (Jamaica), Leana Du Plooy (South Africa) and Vilimaina Davu (Fiji) and Team Pasifika. Silver Ferns tour South Africa for the first time winning all three Tests. England tours New Zealand.

2001

Future Directions II strategy announced with a vision to make Netball in New Zealand ‘more visible, more exciting, more now”. Silver Ferns win inaugural Tri-Nations Series against Australia and South Africa. England tour New Zealand. Australia tour and win Fisher & Paykel Series.

2002

Ruth Aitken is appointed Silver Ferns coach with Leigh Gibbs as assistant coach. Early season tour to Jamaica. Silver Ferns win series 2-1 after suffering their first ever loss to Jamaica in the second Test Silver Ferns win silver medal at the Commonwealth Games, in Manchester, losing in the final to Australia in the longest Test Match in history after double overtime was required to separate the teams.

2003

A golden year for Netball in New Zealand as the Silver Ferns are unbeaten on their way to winning the 11th World Championships in Jamaica, their first world title since 1987.

2004

At New Zealand's annual Halberg Sports awards, the Silver Ferns win the Halberg Supreme Award, Ruth Aitken is named Coach of the Year and Irene van Dyk takes out the Sportswoman of the Year award.

2005

Netball New Zealand launches its Strategic Plan, 'Out of the Circle’. The Silver Ferns achieve their largest winning score against Australia in a Test Match with a 61–36 result in Auckland. The New Zealand under-21 team wins the World Youth Championship title in Fort Lauderdale, Miami. Waikato/Bay of Plenty Magic become the first North Island team to win the National Bank Cup when they beat the Southern Sting in the final, in the process ending the Sting’s six-year reign as champions.

2006

New look Asics match dress for the Silver Ferns. The Silver Ferns win the Commonwealth Games gold medal for the first time with a 60-55 win over Australia in the final in Melbourne

2007

Raelene Castle is appointed Chief Executive of Netball New Zealand. The National Bank Cup competition ends on a high note when Southern Sting defeats Northern Force in the Final to take the trophy home to invercargill for good. Given only ten months to organise the 12th World Championships, New Zealand hosts a highly successful event at The Trusts Stadium, Waitakere, Auckland. Australia defeats New Zealand 42-38 in a bruising and enthralling Final. Netball New Zealand and Netball Australia establish a joint venture company, Trans-Tasman Netball Ltd, to launch Austrasia's first semi-professional Netball league, subsequently known as the ANZ Championship.

2008

New World becomes the elite sponsor of Netball New Zealand & the Silver Ferns. The first ANZ Championship title is won by the NSW Swifts who beat Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic in the Grand Final on 28 July. The format of the National Championships, supported by the Perry Foundation, is revamped, with round robin 1st Grade games held over four weeks, before a Finals Week in Rotorua.

2009

Netball New Zealand launches its Strategic Plan, 2009-2012, with the goal of becoming New Zealand's leading sport by 2020. New apparel sponsor Adidas launches the new Silver Ferns match dress. The inaugural New Zealand Under-17 Championships are held in Wellington and won by Auckland Waitakere. Casey Williams becomes the Silver Ferns captain following the retirement of Julie Seymour.The Silver Ferns travel to Liverpool and win the inaugural Netball World Series (FASTNET), coached by Ruth Aitken beating Jamaica in the final 32-27.