Until recently Australia and New Zealand have dominated the World netball scene, but England’s defeat of Australia earlier in the year has implied that a changing of the guard may be just around the corner.
Jamaica and South Africa have always been two nations knocking at the door waiting to be invited to join the top table but there may be a surprise package in Singapore. They will certainly be a nation to watch in the coming years.
To match their ambition, in December they appointed former Silver Ferns player and coach Ruth Aitken Director and National coach, however she only took up the post last week.
Aitken admitted there would be new challenges moving from a team perennially ranked in the top two to a team ranked 21 in the world. She has set her goals on developing the talent that exists and trying to instil a winning mentality. Her first test will be the World Youth Netball Championships in Glasgow next month. which will be followed by the 2013 Nations Cup in December; a tournament hosted by Singapore but which the host nation has failed to win since 2007.
Aitken has already stated after one training session that the intensity has to be raised by the team and so too their fitness. Her goal is to the see the team quickly jump three to four places in the world rankings and then be in a position to compete at the Commonwealth Games with the top twelve teams in the Commonwealth.
Aitken is used to success, and there is no doubt this will be a big challenge, Singapore will not be challenging the big guns just yet but as they say, the only way is up when you are a lower ranked nation.