Jaguars seems ready to win Brutal Fruit league this year

South Africa’s best netball players will soon take part in the semi-professional Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League tournament.

The tournament will officially start on 21 April with the highlight on 11 June, when the final will be played.

Ten semi-professional teams, each representing a region in South Africa, will be part of the games in the league phase.

The Gauteng Jaguars, coached by Jenny van Dyk, will again represent Pretoria. She will be assisted by Jenni-Lee Delport.

The league phase is divided into three parts, each taking place at a different venue over two or three weekends in either Durban, Cape Town or Bloemfontein.

Bloemfontein is also earmarked to host the semi-finals and the final on 10 and 11 June.

The tournament starts with the first round of league matches from 21 to 23 April at the Durban University of Technology.

The next weekend (28-30 April) the teams will be back in Durban for the next round of matches.

The action will then move to Cape Town for the biggest part of May.

From 5 to 7 May the teams will compete at the Belhar Indoor Sport Centre.

For the next two weekends (12-14 May and 19-21 May) the action will move to the Belville Velodrome.

The teams will then travel to Bloemfontein for the final three weekends of action (26-28 May, 2-4 June and 10-11 June).

The Jaguars’ team this year represents a good mixture of experienced and young emerging players.

Seasoned stars like Chrisna (Bootha) van Zyl, Izette Griesel (Lubbe), Marlize de Bruin, Ine-Mari Venter and Shadine van der Merwe will be able to provide guidance to a group of young players who will make their debut for the Jaguars.

Van Dyk’s team will have to do without three key players from last year, who are all international stars.

Lenize Potgieter is playing in New Zealand, Lindie Lombard went to the Fireballs and Melissa Kotze has retired.

Van Dyk said it was a good thing so many young players got the chance to play in this league. She said the team was ready to get the monkey off their backs in the tournament. Although they were among the favourites every year since the start of the tournament, they could never manage to win it.

 

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  AUTHOR
Koos Venter
sport journalist

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