The 2023 Netball World Cup is upon us.
Here’s everything you need to know about the teams, schedule and format as the best players from around the world compete for the sport’s biggest prize.
When is the 2023 Netball World Cup?
The tournament starts on Friday July 28 and will run until Sunday August 6.
There will be 60 matches scheduled across the 10 days with games starting from 8am (BST) on every day of the tournament.
England, Scotland, and Wales are the home nations taking part and will be hoping to reach the final, which starts at 5pm on Sunday August 6.
The opening ceremony is at 3pm on Friday July 28 with the closing ceremony on the final Sunday.
Where is it?
The tournament is being held in Cape Town, South Africa, for the first time.
The host venue, the Cape Town International Convention Centre, will have two courts with matches taking place simultaneously.
What happened in the last Netball World Cup?
The previous Netball World Cup took place in 2019 and was held in Liverpool.
In a rematch of the 2015 final, New Zealand became champions for the fifth time after beating Australia by one goal, while England, who were hosts, finished in third place.
Which teams are in it?
16 teams will be playing in the World Cup, and they’ll be divided into the following pools:
Pool A: Australia, Tonga, Zimbabwe, and Fiji
Pool B: England, Malawi, Scotland and Barbados
Pool C: Jamaica, South Africa, Wales and Sri Lanka
Pool D: New Zealand, Uganda, Trinidad & Tobago and Singapore
What is the format?
There are three stages – two group stages, followed by a knockout and placing phase.
When teams are knocked out they will continue to play matches with the teams being ranked from one to 16 by the end of the tournament.
Stage 1 (Preliminaries Stage: Friday July 28 – Sunday July 30)
The World Cup starts with 16 teams in four pools, taking each other on in a round-robin format.
Each team plays three games and after three days of competition, each team in each pool is ranked from one to four.
The top three teams from Pool A and B move forward to form Pool F, while the top three teams in Pool C and D form Pool G.
The bottom team from each pool is effectively eliminated from the main competition, but move into Group E to contest 13th to 16th place.
Stage 2 (Second Stage: Monday July 31 – Thursday August 3)
The teams in Pool F and G each carry forward the results (points/goals for and against) from the matches played against the two teams they have already faced in their first-stage pool.
They play three further matches against the teams that have joined them in the second-stage pools (so the three teams from Pool A play the three Pool B teams and the three teams from Pool C play the three teams from Pool D).
Once all the matches have been played, the top two teams in Pool F and Pool G qualify for the semi-finals.
The remaining teams can no longer win the World Cup, but move on into final classification matches.
Stage 3 (play-offs and placings: Friday August 4 – Sunday August 6)
In the tournament’s final stage, there can be no draws – all matches must be played to a result.
In the semi-finals, the winner of Pool F plays the runner-up in Pool G with the winner of Pool G playing the runner-up in Pool F.
Matches for medals follow, where the two teams who won their semi-final ties lock horns for gold and silver, and the losers battle for bronze.
Teams that finish third or fourth in Group F or G compete for fifth to eighth place. This is followed by a final classification match where the winners and losers take to the field. The format also applies to those vying for the ninth to 12th slots.
Finally, the top two teams in Group E play a final classification match for 13th and 14th place. The bottom two teams play a final classification match for 15th and 16th place.
What are the fixtures?
The action kicks off in Cape Town on Friday morning with New Zealand facing off against Trinidad & Tobago.
Friday July 28:
8am: New Zealand vs Trinidad & Tobago / Tonga vs Fiji
10am: Australia vs Zimbabwe / Uganda vs Singapore
5pm: South Africa vs Wales / Jamaica vs Sri Lanka
7pm: England vs Barbados / Malawi vs Scotland
Saturday July 29:
8am: New Zealand vs Uganda / Zimbabwe vs Fiji
10am: Australia vs Tonga / Jamaica vs Wales
5pm: Scotland vs Barbados / South Africa vs Sri Lanka
7pm: England vs Malawi / Trinidad & Tobago vs Singapore
Sunday July 30:
8am: Australia vs Fiji / Wales vs Sri Lanka
10am: New Zealand vs Singapore / Malawi vs Barbados
5pm: England vs Scotland / Uganda vs Trinidad & Tobago
7pm: Jamaica v South Africa / Tonga vs Zimbabwe
The fixtures for the second two stages will be confirmed following the end of phase one.
Saturday August 5
8am: 11th/12th placing match
10am: Semi-Final 1
3pm: Semi-Final 2
5pm: 9th/10th placing match
Sunday August 6
8am: 7th/8th placing match
10am: 5th/6th placing match
3pm: Bronze medal match
5pm: Netball World Cup final