The sixth national netball championship ends today at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam with the host team, Taifa Queens assured of emerging second from title holders Malawi.
Taifa Queens have lost one match, against Malawi. They won against Lesotho 57-13, lost to Malawi 34-30 and beat Zambia 37-33.
With South Africa missing, the tournament sanctioned by the International Netball Federation (IFNA) offers a considerable chance for the host to improve on the international rankings.
Joel Mwakitale, the vice president of the Africa Netball Associations, said that each win at the championship gives the team a chance of gaining more points for the IFNA rakings.
“Any win at the tournament organized by IFNA counts at the rankings, whose latest standings are expected to be released soon,” he said.
Six teams are competing in the event, namely Lesotho, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Botswana and hosts Tanzania. Uganda was disqualified from the event for alleged government involvement in the running of netball activities in that country, while Namibia did not turn up due to financial challenges its association is facing.
Meanwhile, the government has advised sports associations to involve the National Sports Council (NSC) and also to form a strategic plan as a blueprint for preparations if they are to get government assistance for international events in which they are hosting.
Dr Fenela Mukangara, the Minister of Information, Youth, Sports and Culture made this appeal when officiating at the opening of a five-day in Dar es Salaam. She said sports associations should stop seeking to involve the government at the last minutes of preparations for international tournaments.
She said sports associations should start involving the government whenever they want to host international tournaments, urging sports associations to bring up ambitious plans.
They should also operate professionally for the corporate world and the government to help them financially, the minister maintained.
“You must involve the government in whatever you are doing. Formulate plans as to what your objectives are for a specific period of time, and how you are going to achieve that with a good strategic plan. It becomes easier to convince the government to assist the sports organization involved,” she said.
The minister assured sports associations in the country of government support, noting that the government values the importance of sports in uniting people of different races and its importance in the economic and social development.
Dr Mukangara also praised the country’s netball association (Chaneta) for hosting the international championship which ends today. The body needs to be commended by all sport loving Tanzanians, she added.