A deeply cherished wish of the Rotorua Netball Association is coming true. NZCT awarded the club $500,000 towards resurfacing their 20-year-old asphalt netball courts with a new synthetic surface. This synthetic surface is safer for the players and will reduce the number of injuries on ankles and knees.
The Rotorua Netball Association has around 3000 members. They are based in Westbrook where they currently own 20 courts. Mary Thompson, Secretary of the Rotorua Netball Association, emphasises that the current courts must be replaced soon. “Our courts have a surface that is more than 20 years old. It is becoming unsafe to play netball on it, because of all the cracks and sand that is surfacing on them. Besides that, an asphalt surface is now causing many ankle and knee injuries.”
Members of the Rotorua Netball Association did lots of research on a safer and better alternative for asphalt. They visited other sports centres and decided to go for a synthetic surface and, thanks to NZCT, they can finally start realising it. Mary Thompson said: “I'm over the moon with this generous gift of $500,000 from NZCT. When this season is finished the contractors will start with the renovation of the courts. Hopefully by the start of the new season in March 2018 the players can enjoy the new surface. I still can’t believe this is really happening during my time as a Secretary. Soon we will have the same synthetic surface in Rotorua as the big sports centres in New Zealand. The netball community is really excited about this.”
According to Mary Thompson not only the Rotorua netball community will have benefits from the new courts. “We host many tournaments for the region and nationally, such as the Kurangaituku Tournament which NZCT kindly supports. Players from all over New Zealand who will visit us during these tournaments will really enjoy the new surface.”