President of Netball Jamaica Tricia Robinson, on Friday, announced a triangular series involving South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica called the Supreme Ventures Margaret Beckford Series.
This will be played without spectators at the National Indoor Sports Centre from October 9-23. The first match will be between the fourth-ranked Sunshine Girls and the 10th-ranked Trinidad and Tobago. South Africa are ranked at number five.
President Robinson indicated that this series is more than just a friendly, as it will contribute to the world ranking of teams and help in preparation for the Sunshine Girls series with England in November as well as the Commonwealth Games slated for Birmingham, England, in 2022.
The Netball Jamaica president then released the names of the squad of 16 players for this series, most of them presently playing in England and Australia. There are two uncapped players — Amanda Pickney, 20, and Paula Ann Burton, also 20. She also introduced two of the official sponsors Budget Car Rental, official transportation sponsors represented at launch by Trudy Thomas, and and Horizon Pharmacy as medical kit sponsors represented by Dr Tyrone Smith.
Captain of the Sunshine Girls team Janiele Fowler as well as Shamera Sterling addressed the press conference via Zoom from Australia. Captain Fowler indicated that the series presents a great opportunity to test the Sunshine Girls’ readiness after the challenges posed by the novel coronavirus pandemic. She considers both teams to be strong opponents after losing to South Africa in the Netball World Cup.
Sterling says the team is up to the challenge and implores sponsors to support netball and the Sunshine Girls.
Meanwhile, Margaret Beckford, in whose honour the series was named alongside title sponsor Supreme Ventures, has been a long-standing leader in netball administration.
— Collin Reid