Foxtel launch new grassroots netball program

Foxtel, in conjunction with Netball Australia, announced a new grassroots netball program in Melbourne on Wednesday.

As part of the new sponsorship arrangement, Foxtel, who become a supporting partner of grassroots netball, the Australian Netball Diamonds and ANZ Championship, have unveiled a range of new and exciting initiatives.

“We are excited to announce this new program with our partners at Netball Australia to encourage more girls to play netball and lead a healthy and active lifestyle, while inspiring the next generation of netball stars,” Foxtel Chief Executive Richard Freudenstein said.

“This program aligns nicely with what we are doing with football in Australia and means that Foxtel will now support grassroots activity in two of the nation’s most popular participatory sports.”

The nation-wide program will complement the recently announced netball broadcast agreement with FOX SPORTS by partnering with Australia’s largest female participation sport to get more girls on courts and playing the hugely popular game.

Foxtel is now the home of netball, with all ANZ Championship games, including finals, and Australian Diamonds international Tests broadcast live and in high definition on FOX SPORTS.

“Australian women and girls love netball, so I am delighted that, with FOX SPORTS, we can now ensure that they have the opportunity to view all of the games of the ANZ Championship live. Our support for grass roots participation will ensure that the quality of netball all across Australia remains strong,” Mr Freudenstein said.

The new initiative will include the Foxtel All-Star Program, which will be offered free to 500 young players around Australia, with five one-day clinics in major centres including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide.

Potential participants will be asked to share stories of their passion for netball, and will then be selected to join these clinics that will include all aspects of netball training and coaching.

A further component of the initiative is the ‘Diamonds for Dreams’ program whereby Foxtel will contribute funds to support netball clubs through Netball Australia’s One Netball Program. This contribution will be linked to the number of goals scored by the Australian Netball Diamonds during their international fixtures.

“This announcement is another significant milestone in growing our sport’s future in Australia,” Netball Australia CEO Kate Palmer said.

“Netball Australia, in conjunction with Foxtel, can continue to provide a safe and inclusive environment to more grassroots netballers around the country as we look to strengthen our position as Australia’s premier female participation sport.”

NSW Swifts and Diamonds shooter Susan Pratley said: “It’s fantastic that Foxtel is on board with Netball Australia. I think netball is a fantastic sport that is just growing and it’s fantastic to see it going down to the grassroots level,” said Pratley.

“I’m a country girl (from Bega) … we didn’t have as many opportunities when I was growing up, so it’s fantastic now we can get out to those country areas and all kids around Australia can play netball.”