13 Mar 2007

Former Silver Ferns coach wary about new trans-tasman competition

10:22 am on 13 March 2007

The former Silver Fern's coach says netball faces challenging times as it makes the transition from an amateur sport to a semi-professional one.

A new ten team competition will be launched next year involving five franchises from each side of the Tasman with 300-thousand dollar salary caps.

Netball New Zealand says the new competition will heighten the sport's success.

The former national and Fiji coach Yvonne Willering, agrees, but says the netballers are unlikely to receive a full salary, and becoming semi-professional will make life more difficult for some.

"Sounds like we will be playing some Monday nights, so you know its far more commitment for players, obviously it's going to go for longer, and it will be tougher because we're obviously matching our strengths against our Australian counterparts as well so the players of the future won't be in the game as long."

Yvonne Willering says the new competition will lift the standard of New Zealand netball.