Netball: Malaysia, Cook Islands and Swaziland among teams confirmed for Nations Cup

New Singapore netball head coach Natalie Milicich with the Singapore team at a training session in Sept 2017.
New Singapore netball head coach Natalie Milicich with the Singapore team at a training session in Sept 2017. PHOTO: NETBALL SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - This year's Mission Foods Nations Cup from Dec 3-9 will pit host country Singapore against familiar foes Malaysia, as well as more foreign opponents like Swaziland.

The six-nation line-up was unveiled on Wednesday (Oct 11) by Netball Singapore.

The Republic, ranked No. 19 in the world, will be the highest-ranked nation in the annual competition.

Malaysia (No. 20), Ireland (No. 22), Hong Kong (No. 24), Swaziland (No. 30) and Cook Islands (unranked) complete the slate.

The Cook Islands and Swaziland are making their debut at the tournament, and both have strong netball backgrounds, despite their current rankings. The Cook Islands do not have a world ranking due to a lack of international test matches played, while Swaziland recently beat Botswana (No. 21) in the African Netball Championship last month.

Causeway rivals Malaysia are reigning SEA Games and Asian champions.

Said newly-appointed national coach Natalie Milicich: "We are aiming for the top-two positions in the Mission Foods Nations Cup 2017 this December. The nations participating this year are tough competitors and we will not be underestimating the strength of the teams. It will be a good opportunity to see where we are at globally and further work on strategies to improve our performance."

Early bird tickets go on sale from Thursday (Oct 12) until Nov 26, with prices starting at $5 for students. There are also family packages and season passes which will be sold at a discount of up to 40 per cent during the early bird ticket sales period.