The Jamaica Olympic Association has lavished praise on the country’s netball team that won the bronze medal at the just-concluded Netball World Cup in South Africa. After losing their semi-final 57-54 to eventual champions on Saturday, the Sunshine Girls rebounded on Sunday to defeat prior champions New Zealand 52-45 to secure the bronze medal, their first at the championships in 16 years.
According to the JOA, the Sunshine Girls quest for gold at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in South Africa, which had been the home of the Netball World Cup for the couple of weeks, ended with a well-deserved bronze. But their heroic journey remains imprinted in the sporting landscape and hearts of many and foremost the apex local body.
“Gold was not the medal but golden was the achievement, golden is the future of the sport and golden will be the legacy,” said Secretary General and Chief Executive Officer, Ryan Foster.
“The JOA is reveling in the sunshine as we celebrate the commitment, courage, purpose and professionalism of our girls who continue steadfastly to keep their appointment with destiny.”
The hour will come when the world will acknowledge the Sunshine Girls as its champion in netball and the hope is “that the cup will, in the near future, come home to Jamrock where it will become the cornerstone of the ambitions of young girls in the sport and the foundation of Jamaica’s dominance on the global stage,” Secretary General Foster further commented.
The JOA is of the view that netball has earned a right locally to be a flagship sport and with the accomplishment in Cape Town and the historic gold medal in the recent inaugural tournament at the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games in San Salvador, it has nothing more to prove.
“Netball’s credentials are well established and its pedigree as a leading sport is not up for debate for as we say ‘argument done,” JOA President Christopher Samuda stated.
“The Tricia Robinson-led netball administration and national coach, Connie Francis, can be justly proud of the sport’s achievements which continue to gain the applause of a global audience. The future continues to be bright and secure in safe hands.”