Silver Ferns get replacement opponent

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The Silver Ferns and a New Zealand Men’s Invitational team will clash in a three-match series next month after the Constellation Cup against the Australian Diamonds was called off.

Photo: Photosport Ltd 2020

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The three-day series will see the Silver Ferns go up against the New Zealand Men on Sunday 10, Monday 11 and Tuesday 12 October in Hamilton.

Curtain raiser matches will also be played between New Zealand A and the New Zealand Under 21 teams.

Netball New Zealand chief executive Jennie Wyllie said she was looking forward to watching New Zealand’s top talent on show.

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“We’re really pleased to be able to confirm this series in such challenging and uncertain times and is a wonderful opportunity to see the depth of talent we have in this country across both the women’s and men’s game,” she said.

Silver Ferns head coach Dame Noeline Taurua said the series was another opportunity to develop players across the board.

“The Cadbury Netball Series with the inclusion of New Zealand teams has been a really successful event for the entire programme in helping players gain experience out there on court,” she said.

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“With Commonwealth Games next year and then Netball World Cup in 2023 we need to keep growing both on and off court. Match experience is crucial in building towards our upcoming international events, but also going forward beyond that.”

New Zealand Men’s and Mixed Netball Association President Junior Tana said the series was an exciting opportunity.

“We are really excited to be able to get some of our elite men’s players out on court after Covid led to the postponement of our 2021 Men’s Nationals,” he said.

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“We always love these dual gender clashes as they push our athletes to new extremes and add to the development of both sides.

Netball New Zealand will continue to monitor the current Covid-19 alert levels and tickets for the series will be opened if and when New Zealand moves to Alert Level 1.

The Silver Ferns ended a run of three straight defeats to the New Zealand men’s netball team in October last year in the quad series final.

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