Tales from Netball World Cup: Records

With a “best games ever” quote from International Netball Federation (INF) President Molly Rhone saying “the 2015 Netball World Cup in Sydney is the best one ever,” NWC2015 Chief Executive Marne Fechner and her team can stand proud.

“This was certainly an amazing and memorable event and brilliantly showcased our world class game. Australian hospitality is legendary and this World Cup is certainly a hard one to beat.”

Day 3 of the competition saw a World Record set for attendance at a netball match, only to be smashed less than a week later on Day 9.

The event broke its own record for a second time on the Final Day, with 16,752 people in attendance to watch the play-offs for Gold, Silver and Bronze medals.

Nearly 100,000 spectators attended the matches at Sydney Olympic Park over the 10 days of the competition.

The new competition format has extended this World Cup to 64, an increase of 16 matches played in recent years giving teams opportunities to play matches against more countries. It has also extended the tournament from a week to ten days providing fans with a feast of netballing action.

Former Australian captain, Natalie von Bertouch loves the new format with close top quality clashes throughout the tournament instead of just in the final days. Watching a New Zealand v Australia match on Day 3 gave impetus to the Cup and was a delight for fans.”

She also noted that the system seems to be producing much closer matches providing greater interest for fans and supporters.

Whilst the on court action has been fast and furious and kept fans enthralled it has been some of the off court support acts that have made the 2015 in Sydney memorable.

Rhone was also impressed that “Sydney organisers took the whole fan experience to another level,” and she enjoyed being a part of the many off court activities including FanFEST and the Legends Lunch.

FanFEST, the ultimate activity hub for fans has blown out all expectations with 65,292 people heading over the road from Allphones Arena to indulge in all things Netball. With appearances from players from all the competing nations, a variety of interactive netball-based activities, sponsor give-aways and a large merchandising outlet, FanFEST has been a pulsing bonus for fans on a scale never seen before at Netball.

The younger aspiring netballers were not forgotten with an enormous outdoor netball clinic held by several of Australia’s netball greats creating a world record of 555 young participants. And fans are also embracing the variety of associated social events like The Legends lunches, Grand Final breakfast and Afternoon Tea with the Stars.

The success of the 2015 Netball Cup can certainly be judged as very successful with capacity crowds, the top 16 nations in the world battling each other in exciting netball on the court, but the true measure is often the legacy the event leaves.

Sydney’s “best ever event” legacy lies in raising the bar for future professional World Cups that will reflect President Moly Rhone’s opening remark at the Official Opening, and echoed by the Australian Prime Minister, that “Women’s Sport Matters.”

And the final words from Molly Rhone: “Thank you Sydney.”

Article courtesy of Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015; www.nwc2015.com.au